Raffy’s pursuit of meaningful change
Raffy Sgroi’s life has been one driven by an unwavering passion for community engagement and the pursuit of meaningful change in our world. While Raffy has always been dedicated to various forms of advocacy, her connection with her brother-in-law, Ricardo, who has Down syndrome, has ignited an even fiercer dedication to the cause of disability advocacy.
“My relationship with Ricardo has allowed me to witness his unique lived experiences and it’s highlighted the pressing need for advocacy, support, and equal opportunities for people with disabilities,” Raffy said.
“It’s clear that beyond the immediate familiar circle, there is broader responsibility to create an inclusive environment that nurtures their well-being, encourages personal growth, and facilitates integration into society.”
Raffy’s connection with Ricardo has ignited a deep-seated commitment within her, a commitment to confront these challenges head-on, advocate for systemic change, and actively contribute to a more compassionate and accessible world. Ricardo’s life experiences have not only inspired Raffy to champion disability awareness but have also motivated her to actively seek practical solutions.
Using business to champion disability inclusivity
In Raffy’s eyes, the journey of disability advocacy is a collective effort, one that requires participation and support of individuals and communities alike. As a certified business and career coach, she strives to create resources, mentorship programs and initiatives that empower people with disability, and bridge the gap that hinders their full participation in society. Raffy also owns a car mechanical service where she has created opportunities for individuals with disabilities to learn valuable skills and gain practical experience.
“Diversity and inclusion are not just buzzwords for me—they are essential components of a thriving, innovative workplace.”
Through coaching and community initiatives, Raffy is transforming both individuals and businesses as she aspires to be a catalyst for positive change, both in the professional realm and in society.”
“I firmly believe that everyone, regardless of their circumstances, deserves a chance to excel and contribute their unique talents to the world.”
As part of her initiatives, Raffy collaborates with school well-being teams and career expos, providing guidance to students with a disability who are transitioning into the workplace. She also facilitates a weekly work experience program at her mechanical workshop specifically for neurodivergent students, that allows them to gain hands-on experience in real work scenarios.
Raffy’s ultimate vision is to create a platform that empowers students to confidently step from school into the workforce, armed with an understanding of their strengths and tools to achieve their fullest potential.
Co-designing a better future for the disability community
As part of Raffy’s advocacy work, she also works with Feros Care on the Co-Design collaboration, an initiative aimed at fostering more inclusive and connected communities, guided by the insights and perspectives of the disability community and their advocates. The group’s goal is to create environments where people with disabilities not only have a voice, but are actively involved in shaping the policies, programs and initiatives that affect their lives, particularly when it comes to employment.
“As a member of the Co-Design group, I contribute my distinctive perspective, drawing from my roles as both a family member and an employer who actively hires individuals with disability. This dual perspective allows me to contribute understanding of the challenges and opportunities that individuals with disability face in the employment landscape.”
“Ultimately, my participation in the group is driven by the desire to contribute to the betterment of our communities. Through open dialogue and shared experience, I believe we can co-create solutions that promote inclusivity, accessibility and equal opportunity for all.”
Ricardo played a pivotal role in Raffy’s introduction to Feros Care, when they provided assistance in his NDIS planning.
“They offered a carefully tailored framework that aligned perfectly with Ricardo’s individual needs and aspirations. Feros has been a partner in the journey towards creating a better life for Ricardo and promoting disability awareness.”
A better, more inclusive world
Raffy longs for the world to understand the immense potential, resilience and unique perspectives people with disability bring to their communities. Also, that accessibility and inclusion aren’t just optional gestures: they’re essential pillars of a compassionate and equitable society.
“When we create environments that accommodate diverse needs and celebrate individual differences, we unlock a world of possibilities for everyone.”
At Feros Care, we’re proud to support people with disability live healthy, fulfilled and connected lives.
To find your closest Local Area Coordinator, click here.
You may also like to read more about the Co-Design Group initiative.