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The Voice of Albertans with Disabilities actively promotes full participation in society and provides a voice for Albertans with disabilities.

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Bursaries and Awards


Each year, Voice of Albertans with Disabilities awards Education for Life bursaries, the Elsa Marie Lodewyk Memorial Bursary, the Pembina Pipeline Corporation Bursary, the Certificate of Recognition for Academic Achievement and the Voice of Albertans with Disabilities Award.

Education for Life Bursary

To mark the occasion of our 25th anniversary in 1998, Voice of Albertans with Disabilities initiated the Education for Life Bursary program. With this program, we support students who have a disability to achieve their post-secondary goals.

Criteria

In order to be eligible for the Education for Life Bursary, applicants must meet the following criteria:

  • Have a disability
  • Live in Alberta
  • Use the bursary for tuition fees and/or course materials
  • Submit a completed application form by July 15
  • Include one letter of reference from an adult other than a family member. (Only one letter of reference will be accepted.)
  • Write and submit a short biography (maximum 250 words), which includes educational goals.

Value

Bursaries range in value from $300 to $2000.

Selection

Applicants are selected on the basis of their motivation and economic circumstances. While all full- and part-time post-secondary students are eligible for the bursary, first-year students are given first consideration.

Presentation

All applicants, whether they receive an award or not, are notified by mail before August 15 of each year. Voice of Albertans with Disabilities sends a cheque directly to the post-secondary institution that successful applicants will be attending. Recipients are acknowledged in a variety of Voice of Albertans with Disabilities publications.

Apply

Download an Education for Life Bursary Application Form.

Elsa Marie Lodewyk Memorial Bursary

The Elsa Marie Lodewyk Memorial Bursary was established by her family to reflect Elsa’s generosity, kindness and gentleness. She would have been thrilled to know that she was helping another person with a disability.

Voice of Albertans with Disabilities board members and staff greatly appreciate the Lodewyk family’s generosity and contribution to higher education for students with disabilities in memory of their daughter, Elsa Marie.

About Elsa Marie Lodewyk

Elsa Marie Lodewyk was born on April 18, 1992, with severe cerebral palsy and was not expected to live for even a few days. She had a strong will, though, and lived a full life for almost 19 years. Elsa’s disabilities meant that she needed help from many people – her parents, siblings, teachers, schoolmates, caregivers, doctors and nurses. She touched the lives of many people with her gentle spirit and had many friends. Elsa showed that life is about building strong relationships, listening to one another and being a friend. Even though Elsa could not speak, she was able to contribute to the lives of numerous people and her life had a positive impact on many.

Value

The successful candidate will receive a one-time bursary of $1,000 from the Elsa Marie Lodewyk Memorial Bursary fund.

Apply

All applicants for the Education for Life Bursary will be considered for the Elsa Marie Lodewyk Memorial Bursary. No additional application is required. Download an Education for Life Bursary application form.

The Pembina Pipeline Corporation Bursary

The Pembina Pipeline Corporation Bursary will be awarded to a student with a disability residing in Alberta and attending a post-secondary institution in the province (college, university, trade school, etc.). The award will be based on community involvement and financial need, with the student selected at the discretion of the Voice of Albertans with Disabilities.

Voice of Albertans with Disabilities board members and staff greatly appreciate the generosity and contribution by the Pembina Pipeline Corporation to higher education for students with disabilities.

Value

The successful candidate will receive a one-time bursary of $2,000.

Apply

All applicants for the Education for Life Bursary will be considered for the Pembina Pipeline Corporation Bursary. No additional application is required. Download an Education for Life Bursary application form.

Certificate of Recognition for Academic Achievement

Each year, Voice of Albertans with Disabilities contacts every post-secondary institution in the province, inviting VP Academics to nominate students for the Certificate of Recognition for Academic Achievement.

Criteria

In order to be eligible for the Certificate of Recognition for Academic Achievement, nominees must meet the following criteria:

  • Have a disability
  • Be attending a post-secondary institution in Alberta (full time or part time)
  • Demonstrate effort and academic achievement

Nomination process

  • The institution’s VP Academic, or designate, completes and submits the nomination form that they receive from VAD
  • The nomination form must be submitted to Voice of Albertans with Disabilities by January 15 and May 15 of each academic year

Voice of Albertans with Disabilities Award

Each year, Voice of Albertans with Disabilities presents the Voice of Albertans with Disabilities Award to an Alberta citizen for his or her "dedication and integrity in the continuing pursuit of full participation in society by people with disabilities in Alberta."

Criteria

In order to be eligible for the Voice of Albertans with Disabilities Award, nominees must meet the following criteria:

  • Live in Alberta and been a resident for at least one year
  • Show outstanding commitment to improving the lives of persons with disabilities by promoting the three guiding principles of the Voice of Albertans with Disabilities: full participation, accessibility and equity.

Process

  • To nominate an individual, complete a nomination form and submit it along with a minimum of one and a maximum of three letters of support (400 words or less) by December 31.
  • The Voice of Albertans with Disabilities board of directors selects the individual found to be the most deserving of the award.
  • Current Voice of Albertans with Disabilities board members are not eligible for this award. Board members can be nominated after they have been off the Voice of Albertans with Disabilities board for one year.
  • Voice of Albertans with Disabilities promotes the award through its newsletters (Action News, Action Notes), website and other appropriate communication materials.

Nominate

Download a Voice of Albertans with Disabilities Award nomination form.

 

2016 Voice of Albertans with Disabilities Award Recipient: Cindy Gordon


In 1995, Cindy, co-founded the Canadian Hard of Hearing Association - Edmonton Branch (CHHA-Ed),  a self-help and self-advocacy organization.  Cindy has served in various capacities on the CHHA-Ed board of directors and is currently a staff member working in the CHHA-Ed office in the capacity of Program Coordinator.
 
Cindy has been very active in the Edmonton community and has held volunteer positions on the following boards and committees: Premier's Council on the Status of Persons with Disabilities, Grant MacEwan University Hearing Aid Practitioner Program, TELUS Communications Advisory Board, Alberta Transportation and Infrastructure, Alberta Safety Code Council, Alberta Aids to Daily Living Advisory Board,  and Hard of Hearing Mental Health and Well Being Committee, City of Edmonton Advisory Board,  and the Alberta Disabilities Forum.
 
She currently holds volunteer advisory positions for Municipal Parks and Recreation, Edmonton International Airport Barrier Free Committee, and NAIT Court Reporting Program.
 
In 2004, Cindy was awarded the Gary McPherson Award of Excellence, recognized throughout Alberta as befitting only those who go "well  beyond the call of duty" towards establishing accessibility and equitable treatment for people with disabilities in Alberta and Canada.
 
In addition, Cindy has been instrumental in the development of the City of Edmonton's Communication Policy highlighting the availability of captioning at all public events, TTY accessible emergency contact at 911, and the training of city staff regarding communication and access for people with hearing loss and deafness.

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