Inspiring sister helps break down barriers

Dec 8, 2022

Sisters Ruby and Macey are laying on the floor holding Macey's children's book called 'My Sister'

Macey Cikarela always dreamt of becoming an author and illustrator, and at the age of
just nine, she has achieved just that.

Beginning the writing and illustration of “My Sister” when she was seven-years-old,
Macey didn’t need to look too far for inspiration, writing about her 11-year-old sister,
Ruby, who lives with Cerebral Palsy and Epilepsy.

Ruby has been a Rocky Bay customer for just over two years and accesses occupational
therapy, physiotherapy and speech pathology to support her in reaching her goals. Described by their mum, Amy Cikarela, as having a cheeky personality and an infectious laugh, Ruby lives at home with her mum Amy, her dad Mark, sister Macey and brother, Tye.

Macey’s idea in crafting the story was to help teach other children lessons of respect and inclusion for people of all abilities.

“I explain the equipment Ruby uses, like her wheelchair, standing frame, and her walker.I explain how Ruby communicates with some words, sign language, and her talker. I
explain how Ruby plays and has fun”, says Macey.

Macey, Ruby and Amy Cikarela

Whilst Cerebral Palsy may have placed some limits on the way Ruby lives and learns,
Macey has paved the way for the young community to better understand disability.

“The word disability means that someone’s body or brain might be different to yours. It
doesn’t mean that you can’t play with them or talk to them, it just means that you need
to find the things that they can do and play with them that way – because everyone
needs friends”, says Macey in “My Sister”.

“My Sister” was published by Melbourne-based education publisher, Hawker Brownlow
Education in July this year, and is becoming popular in schools to spark discussions
about disability, inclusion, and acceptance.

Rocky Bay would like to thank Macey and the Cikarela family for being such amazing
advocates and for sharing their story to promote inclusion for all

To find out more about Rocky Bay and our paediatric services, call our friendly
Customer Engagement on 6282 1900.

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