Effie Liakopoulos and her family before migrating.
Born with cerebral palsy, Efstathia Liakopoulos, or ‘Effie’, has been a lifelong rights campaigner and advocate.
In 1983 she was a founder of ADEC, a statewide advocacy organisation.
‘My mother, Anna, arrived in Australia with myself and my brother Nick in 1959. My father, Vassili, had arrived three years earlier and sent for us after saving money as a road worker.
‘There were no disability services for individuals such as myself, and we were shunned by many in our own community. My mother struggled to care for two young children. She also worked endlessly as a dishwasher, fruit packer and in a jute factory.
‘On weekends she washed the sheets of our boarders to pay off the house. Eventually she even cared for my own children. My mother is now 93 years old and still my inspiration. I founded ADEC because I don’t want Greek or other parents to experience what my mother went through.’