What is it?
October was officially recognised as “Dwarfism Awareness Month” by the Little People of America (LPA) in 2009. October was chosen as the month to celebrate dwarfism as it’s the birth month of the late Billy Barty, founder of the LPA. It is now celebrated around the world, with several countries passing a resolution to officially name October as Dwarfism Awareness Month.
The Short Statured People of Australia Inc. (SSPA), with the support of the Australian Federal Government joined the LPA in 2012 and officially declared October as Dwarfism Awareness Month. Dwarfism Awareness Month is now listed on the Department of Health’s website, along with all other major awareness days and months relating to health: www.health.gov.au/calendar
Why do we need it?
Dwarfism is a medical condition that is not fully understood. Generally, there is insufficient knowledge about dwarfism. This lack of knowledge has driven speculation and superstition about dwarfism, enabling discrimination.
The declaration of Dwarfism Awareness Month has been a huge step forward for people living with the condition and their families by providing an opportunity to educate society and create general awareness.
What do we hope to achieve?
Acceptance – for people born with a condition of dwarfism, the challenge is to be accepted and integrated into everyday society – this can be hampered by the common misconceptions and lack of education around the condition.
How you can help?
Purchase a wrist band:
Hold an event:
Contact local media:
The facts, the figures and the questions answered
What is dwarfism?
Dwarfism is a condition of short stature caused as a result of a medical or genetic condition. There are over 350 distinct forms of dwarfism and skeletal dysplasia’s.
Short Statured People of Australia Inc. (SSPA) – Equality of Opportunity
The SSPA is a non-profit organisation that provides support and information for people with conditions of dwarfism, their families and other interested members of the community. The SSPA is made up of volunteers who aim to educate the community, provide peer and parent support, participate in programs that benefit the dwarfism community and promote the achievements of people with dwarfism. The SSPA’s main aim is to assimilate people of short stature into society with the goal of equality of education and social status, and of employment opportunities.
Facebook: search ‘SSPA’
At the 47th SSPA AGM held in South Australia, a new National Council has been elected.
Congratulations to the following newly-appointed SSPA National Council members:
President: Sam Millard (Victoria)
Vice-President: Linda Henderson (NSW)
Secretary: Alicia Jenkins (New South Wales)
Treasurer: Rosemary Hobbs (Victoria)
Overseas Liaison Officer: Samantha Lilly (Victoria)
Journal Editor: Tony Munro (New South Wales)
Membership Secretary: Vicki Fallon (New South Wales)
Sports Coordinator: Kobie Donovan (Queensland)
Suzanne Franklin (Western Australia)
Sandra Lundie (North Queensland)
Leisa Prowd (Victoria)
Sarah Darkin (Tasmania)
Michael Blair (New South Wales)
Trish Pinnell (South Australia)
Meredith Young (Victoria)
Notice is hereby given that the 47th Annual General Meeting of the Short Statured People of Australia (SSPA) will take place on Wednesday 24th September 2014 at the Nunyara Conference Centre, Belair, South Australia at 9.30am.
Members may nominate a person/s for election to National Council. The following positions must be filled: President, Vice-President, Secretary, Treasurer, Journal Editor, Overseas Liaison Officer, Membership Secretary and a minimum of six National Council members.
It is suggested that the following is thought of when electing National Council members:
# All active states are represented;
# Male and female representation is equally spread;
# Detailed knowledge of and experience within the SSPA.
To enable members to decide whether they or someone they know would be suitable for a National Council position, please refer to the summary of the responsibilities and obligations of National Councillors that appears here.
SSPA membership subscriptions are due from 1st August 2014. We would like to take this opportunity to thank you for your membership and hope that you continue in the year ahead. Please renew your membership to remain financial and enjoy the benefits of being an SSPA member. A 2014/2015 membership form is available from the Membership page on this website.
Remember your membership needs to be current to receive a discount on your Convention fees and to vote at the AGM.
**A big THANK YOU to the early birds who have already enrolled for 2014-15.
The 47th SSPA Convention will be held from Saturday 20th – Friday 26th September 2014 at the Nunyara Conference Centre, Belair, South Australia. Belair is approximately a 15-minute drive from the Adelaide City centre.
The latest (July) update about the 2014 Convention which includes detailed information about the week can be accessed from here.
The Convention programme itself can be viewed here.
Registration is now open. Information about registration along with the Convention registration forms can be obtained from here. The deadline for completed registration forms is 31st AUGUST.
Any questions or queries should be addressed to the Convention Committee at: [email protected].
In a recent episode (24th March) of the ABC-TV’s Q&A, the SSPA was represented in the audience by Samantha Lilly. Samantha’s appearance was highlighted by her invitation to direct a question to media personality and Collingwood Football Club President, Eddie McGuire about the AFL’s position on discrimination in light of the incident concerning a dwarf entertainer at an AFL club Mad Monday function last year.
For a viewing of this episode, go to the following link: http://www.abc.net.au/tv/qanda/txt/s3955666.htm
After much consideration, it has been announced that Australia will not bid to host the 2017 World Dwarf Games. Instead, it is hoped that an Asia Pacific games can be organised in Australia between now and 2017. One option to be explored is to hold such an event in conjunction with an international convention (the SSPA’s 50th anniversary Convention).