Cathy now hears the world around her — an experience she describes as amazing.

As most of us wind down as the year ends, Cathy and her husband Keith are just getting started. The Blacktown couple are Santa and Mrs Claus at a host of Western Sydney venues — from pre-schools to shopping centres and in their own home where it all began.

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Dianne's cochlear implant has made such a huge difference to her life

Recently retired, Dianne McGowan has had a long career working to achieve something close to her heart – equal employment opportunity for women with a disability. In 2018, Dianne was nominated for the Lesley Hall Lifetime Achievement Award at the inaugural National Awards for Disability Leadership.

Arlo's switch on moment was fantastic for the family

For children with hearing loss, early intervention is crucial to speech development, and for two-year-old Arlo Gleeson, access to a local service in her home town of Port Macquarie has her shining.

Oscar is a high-achiever in everything

Ten-year-old Oscar is an inspiration – from his sporting achievements to his compassion, kindness and passionate support of other children with hearing impairment, it's clear he is destined for great things.

Oliver with his mum, Melissa

11-Year-Old Oliver is preparing for his transition to high school, with support from RIDBC Teleschool, Braille Camp, and the Adaptive Technology Team. Oliver, a talented musician and athlete, won’t be held back by his vision impairment. He has a winning team on his side, with support from his amazing mum, Melissa, who has a Master of Special Education from RIDBC Renwick Centre.

Meeting the engineers who gave Amelie her hearing back was an important moment

Ten-year-old cochlear implant recipient, Amelie Graham, has a keen interest in the technology that has given her access to a world of sound, and recently, Cochlear were able to introduce her to the engineers who made her hearing possible.