Tully Zygier

Tully Zygier
Tully Zygier

I completed a Bachelor of Social Work in 1999 and now work at Yooralla as an advocate and coordinator of a peer support program. Having developed a disability through a chronic illness I have discovered the disability community and am a co-host on the Boldness on 3CR. I am also an avid blogger where I share my story.

I completed a Bachelor of Social Work in 1999 and now work at Yooralla as an advocate and coordinator of a peer support program.

Tully Zygier's articles

The huge Dawn Princess cruise ship docked at a harbour

The cruise was the holiday.

Going on a cruise can be daunting due to its size and the amount of people sharing the experience with you. However, the crew are so helpful, the access is adequate and the food is aplenty. The ship may be taking you to a wonderful destination, like New Zealand, but at the end of the day, the cruise is the holiday. Would I recommend a cruise for people who have a disability? If needed, I think it is important to travel with someone who can offer that extra support for personal care and access.
1 comment - on 18/06/2014
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Pizza on a table with a glass of water and cutlery.

Pizza is on the menu at Brunetti.

I wanted to go to the new Brunetti café in Carlton. But my mum said the café is busy. She thought it would be too hard for me to use my walking frame. But I was determined to go and so I went with a friend. The café was very busy. It was hard to navigate with my walking frame. Brunetti does not have a toilet and I had to use another one nearby. The staff was very helpful and kind. And I enjoyed the food. I suggest that people who use walking aids to visit Brunetti during quieter café hours.
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Picture of very happy boy and girl in a cafe.

Meeting of 2 people through Facebook

More and more people are making friendships online. Catfish is a film documentary about a romantic relationship that develops between a young man, Nev, and a young woman, Megan, on the social networking site Facebook.
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A train station platform sign for the Upfield train line
train station timetable sign

Meeting at the station.

Margie and Lois have taken the same train line to work for the last five years. For the first couple of years, they only ever smiled and said hello to each other. Margie would step to the side when Lois boarded the train to give her some space. Lois, who has cerebral palsy, stopped taking the train one day and Margie was worried. Days later, Margie saw Lois coming towards her in a bright scooter and from that day on they have become firm friends and always check up on each other via email.
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A man with tatoos sitting in a wheelchair is laughing along with his young female carer who is crouching down beside him.

People choose how to manage their ISP.

Michelle Wilcox is a 28 year-old woman who has cerebral palsy. She has always wanted to work in the disability area. Last year she started a new job as a peer support worker. She gives information to people who get Individual Support Package money from the government. The money gives people with a disability the opportunity to meet their disability needs. Michelle meets people with disabilities around Melbourne to explain the different ways they can manage their package. Michelle says this job has given her confidence and she is happy to be working in disability.
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An image of earth taken from space.

Marlena has her sights set on space.

When Marlena Katene was in high school all her friends were getting part-time jobs. Marlena has cerebral palsy and uses a communication device. She also uses a wheelchair. So Marlena wasn't sure what job she could find. Still in high school she decided to buy a jumping castle to rent out for kids parties. Now at the age of 21 her business has grown and she is also a professional public speaker. She wants to be the first woman who uses a wheelchair to fly to the moon. She met Richard Branson and he tells her it's possible.
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Actors Helen Hunt and John Hawkes from the movie "The Sessions". They are lying in bed.
HelenHuntandJohnHawkes in film The Sessions

Hunt and Hawkes in "The Sessions".

Mark O'Brien was a poet-journalist from California. He spent most of his life in an iron lung that he needed to breathe. He had achieved many things in his life. But one thing was missing. And this was sex. O'Brien died in 1999. The story of his life has now been made into a film. The film called The Sessions will play at the Melbourne International Film Festival in August. The filmmaker Ben Lewin will talk about the film at a free event. Everyone is welcome to attend.
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A plane taking off with a sunset in the background
plane taking off

I felt prepared and safe for the big trip.

Being able to fly alone is important for me. I use a walking frame and get tired easily. It is easier for me to use a wheelchair at airports. When I fly I get help getting on and off the plane. I also need to use oxygen on the plane and this can cost a lot. I chose to fly with Qantas and British Airways when I visited my parents in Israel this year. British Airways do not charge for oxygen. Qantas charges $700 to use their oxygen tanks. On this trip I was happy to have a good flight.
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A group of young people sitting at a desk.

We talked about our goals.

I applied for a leadership course. It is called Leaders for Tomorrow. It is a course for people with a disability who are passionate about making a difference. I was happy to be accepted. In February I went to Brisbane for the course's two-day forum. We did group activities and practised speaking to an audience. In small groups we also talked about what we want to achieve. The forum helped me realise I need guidance in networking and the way I communicate. I want to help people with a disability to overcome challenges in their lives.
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A red walking frame on wheels with a black cushioned seat

He offered to help me and I rejected him

I am fiercely independent. I like to have control of some things in my life for as long as I can. It is easy to get used to being dependent on others when you have a chronic illness or disability. One of the things I want to keep doing is lifting my frame in and out of the car. But when I go out with men it causes a problem. They are not sure whether to help. I wonder whether I should let them help. It would show I trust them. But where would it lead to next?
4 comments - last comment on 24/11/2014
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