Meet Angela Kalantzis and Martin Broad– QDN Emerging Leaders

Angela has a passion for supporting people with disability who slip through the support service gap. When she had her accident several years ago which left her with a brain injury, Angela reflects that she felt she was released from hospital way to soon. The day after her accident Angela was sent home without the option to go into the brain injury rehabilitation unit or information on other support networks.

Angela has turned this experience into a positive and has created a charity called The Brain Injury Community. The vision of the charity is to close the gap between getting an acquired brain injury and being connected to supports that can help people live an inclusive and full life.

Angela met Martin Broad at QDN’s Emerging Leaders program workshop in March this year. Angela and Martin both applied to be part of QDN’s first ever Emerging Leader program. The program is a place where 20 emerging leaders with disability from across Queensland come together regularly to develop leadership skills, connect, lead and influence change in their own lives and in their communities.

Martin also has an acquired brain injury which results in short term memory loss. Martin applied to become an emerging leader as he wanted to develop his skills to become a public speaker.

Through meeting at the first Emerging Leaders workshop Angela and Martin began talking about how they could work together around their common interests of promoting awareness of acquired brain injuries. Angela has now visited Martin who lives outside of Emerald to help him undertake public speaking engagements where he can share his story, speak about having a brain injury, raise awareness of the risks of alcohol with young people, and encourage people to stop and think about what they might say to someone or how they might treat someone.

Martin wants to do more and keep sharing his story. With the leadership capacity he is building through the Emerging Leaders program and the support of Angela and The Brain Injury Community, Martin is on his journey to living the fulfilling life that he wants, in a community where he feels included and valued.