My name is Lee Rutene. I was born with Cerebral Palsy which affects the lower half of my body and my eyes but I don't let that stand in my way. I first got involved with the Community Connections Board about three or four years ago because I am passionate about disability issues and wanted to make a difference to the lives of others in the Wellington community. I guess for me having a disability is all I know. I was the first person to be educated in a main stream school in the Wellington area in the 1980s and I was also the first client of CCS supported living services when it started. I work for CCS Disability Action as a Disabled Staff Coordinator for the Central Region which covers the Taranaki, Kapiti and Wellington areas.
I also have a number of volunteer positions:
- People First chairing meetings related to Mental Health
- Member of The Accessibility Reference Group for the Wellington City Council improving access around the city and dealing with disability issues that come up
- Member of Capital Support Reference Group advising the CEO on what can be done better
This doesn't leave me a lot of time to relax but when I do I like to watch sport. I used to play Rugby and Swim for the New Zealand Para Olympics team. After an injury six years ago, I recently got back in the pool.