Barnardos Mother of the Year WA 2018 Announced

Introducing Western Australia’s Most Inspirational Mum

Barnardos Australia is pleased to announce Faye Gill from Perth, Western Australia, has been named Barnardos Mother of the Year WA 2018.

Faye Gill, a mother of five, grew up in South Wales in the United Kingdom.  She became a radiographer and married Patrick, with whom she had five children. Believing that Australia had more opportunities, Patrick and Faye immigrated the family here.

Unfortunately, Faye’s fourth child, Lauren was born completely deaf and blind and with severe heart conditions. The doctors gave a devastating prognosis: Lauren would never communicate and would not survive for long.

“My mother, in her typically determined way, proved them wrong,” says her proud and loving son and nominator, Andrew Gill.

“She taught Lauren to fingerspell, sign and braille so that Lauren would be able to communicate.

She stayed up late at night brailling textbooks so Lauren could learn just like any other child, Also acquiring and making the resources needed to teach Lauren in a way which she could understand.”

She has always been an advocate for providing opportunities for children, believing that all children are of equal value, regardless of ability, and they are all deserving of a bright future.

Today the grandmother of three, continues to be the primary carer for Lauren and for her ailing husband. Faye was also a founding member of the Western Australia Deaf/Blind Association started thirty years ago.

“My mother’s story is one of selflessness and strength,” says Andrew. “She is a beacon for the importance of mothers in our lives, a shining example for women of her generation, and a tireless defender for the disadvantaged.”

Faye says the nomination came as a complete surprise.  “Mothering is the most difficult role I have ever undertaken, but also the most important and rewarding.  Mothers know how emotionally and physically exhausting the work of motherhood can be,  but we just do it, because that’s what mothers do and because we love our children.  As mothers, I believe we have the opportunity to shape the character of the future generation. To be nominated for an award for doing something that is a privilege to do is quite overwhelming.”

David Levy from Barnardos Australia says, “Barnardos believes all children and young people deserve caring families in which they can grow safely and fulfil their potential. For 23 years, the Barnardos Mother of the Year awards have recognised amazing mothers in our community who have shown incredible dedication to their children against all the odds. We have been blown away by the inspiring stories we received this year and we would like to thank everyone who nominated a special mum.

For us, it is incredibly moving to see how Faye shares the same philosophy as we do, her soul focus being on the safety and wellbeing of her children. We look forward to celebrating her commitment to nurturing our future generation at our national event in May.”

Faye now progresses to the National Ceremony held in Sydney in May, where she will join the other state and territory winners for the announcement of the Barnardos Mother of the Year 2018. It has been 17 years since a mother from Western Australia has taken home the national award.