Celebrating families

4 mins read

Our Awards are a celebration of the countless and often unrecognised achievements of families with disabled children up and down the country. We had hundreds of nomination and we think every one should be celebrated!

You can read about all the finalists in 2019 in our  Together At 40 Awards booklet  and  Contact Awards 2017 booklet [PDF] 

We hope our Awards can return in 2022!

Our winners in 2019 were…

Annie and Ian Petherick from Wiltshire, winners of the Parent Carer Award, who do all they can for their son Ollie who has Angelman Syndrome as well as helping other families feel less alone through a blog they write – My Three and Me.

Hayley Wedgbury from London, winner of the Parent Power Award for her tireless work to ensure that disabled children in the London borough of Hammersmith could enjoy the park playgrounds, by campaigning and raising money for accessible swings in Ravenscourt and Wormholt Parks.

Naomi Gwynne from Scotland, winner of the Proudest Moment Award for overcoming extreme anxiety to allow classmates to hear her voice for the very first time. Naomi has selective mutism and no one at her school had heard her voice until earlier this year when she made a video of her reciting a poem. It was first played to her teacher, who cried while watching it and was later played to the whole school.

Sebastian Black from London, winner of the Sibling Award (sponsored by Fidelity International) for the friendship and care he instinctively gives younger brother Mylo, who has Donnai Barrow Syndrome. He has made it his business to get to know how he can improve Mylo’s quality of life through play and nurturing, throwing himself into being the best big brother he can be.

The Ashley-Turner Family from Lincolnshire, winner of the We Care About Rare Award, for the family’s dedication to raise awareness and fund research into Congenital Myotonic Dystrophy. Their eldest son Dregan has the condition and the family tirelessly advocate for people with the rare condition, their loved ones and carers.

Pam Johnson from Wales, winner of the Grandparent Award for the care she provides to her great grandson Theo who is autistic. Not only does she look after Theo every night after school, she also supports other children with additional needs at Theo’s school as she is very active in the PTA (parent teacher association).

South Glos Parents & Carers, winner of the Excellence in Parent Carer Participation Award, for not only being a force for change, but also providing a hugely supportive community or local families. As well as working to improve disabled children’s services, they also run a counselling service and training for parent carers to help them get back into work.

And our winners in 2017 were:

  • Philippa and Geoff Gretton, winners of the parent carer award, who make sure their son Ryan can live the life he wants to.
  • Craig Mathieson, winner of the parent power award for his tireless work bringing about a monumental change in disability benefits law.
  • Sid Page, winner of the proudest moment award for overcoming obstacles to save the day when his mum was in trouble.
  • Becki Plant, winner of the family champion award who’s always there for the countless children she teaches as special educational needs coordinator (SENCO).
  • Chloe Thomson, first winner of the sibling award for the friendship she offers her autistic step brother.
  • Sophie Nesbitt, our second winner of the sibling award for making her brother Jack smile and laugh every day.
  • Kara Powell, winner of the grandparents award for her care for her four-year old grandson and the rest of her family.

More about our Awards

Amanda Batten, Chief Executive of Contact, said: “As a charity, we often hear about when things go wrong for families, such as the difficulties of getting the right support. This isn’t surprising as that’s what we are here for. But it’s important to recognise when things go right and come together to celebrate.”

We were delighted that BBC Radio 4’s Jane Garvey hosted both  events in Parliament.