Updated: Sep 18, 2018
“I love living with Down Syndrome,” says Tim Morrissey.
And why shouldn’t he? Tim Morrissey is an energetic 33 year old, passionate about sharing his love of film-making and photography to give people with disability a voice.
“We have a voice and we have a big voice,” Tim tells the camera with enthusiasm during the introduction to the short film he co-created with Tim Jasprizza-St Leon, Welcome to Kingscliff: A story of access and inclusion.
Awarded the 2017 Tweed Shire Access and Inclusion Awards Certificate of Merit, the film shares their “mission to find businesses doing great things to make everyone welcome… and to celebrate their great work for inclusion and to share it with others.”
Photography and film raise awareness and encourage inclusion in his community
“I help people with disabilities, access community and share voices and story,” Tim says of his advocacy. His love for his community is evident, but like many people with a disability, he also understands the struggles of feeling disconnected. His photography and film-making has helped him find people who support his passion to raise awareness and celebrate who they are.
"Photography puts out to the word that we are proud of something, we are loving people," Tim said.
Tim’s journey: Professional film-maker and photographer
This isn’t Tim’s first foray into the world of film-making. As part of the The Run Project in 2015, Films by Morrissey and the Tweed Shire Council created a documentary and three short films that were screened at the Tweed Council’s Access and Inclusion Awards in December 2015.
It was the perfect project for Tim and a chance to share his kind nature with his peers by sharing his artistic and technical expertise, empowering them to learn and explore photography and film-making for themselves.
Tim hopes photography will bring awareness to disabilities. He says, "Be gentle and respect them [people with a disability]. Everywhere you go, show respect for them. Don't make a judgement if you don't know them, look after them and help them."
From disability advocate to master of his own life
Tim’s film-making and photography has given him the confidence to grow and become a valued part of the community.
As a long-term customer of Lifebridge, Tim has made the transition to a self-managed disability support model where he takes ownership and responsibility for all aspects of his daily life.
“We are a normal people, just very special in our hearts. I take part in every aspect of community life and have fair access to the community,” Tim told me. “Accessibility means creating possibilities. It enables people to live their lives according to their individual interests, needs and aspirations.”
Thank you so much for reaching out with your story, Tim.
Over to you
Do you want to share your story with us? We’d love to feature you on our blog. Let us know in the comments and if you loved Tim’s story, please let me him know and share this with your friends.