The national disability charity, Sense, has opened nominations for its national awards, the Sense Awards. Now in their 16th year, the Sense Awards recognise the outstanding achievements of people with complex disabilities, as well as the staff, carers, family members, volunteers and fundraisers that support them.

The are 16 categories in total, including some brand new ones, and the public are now invited to submit their nominations for categories that include, ‘person of the year’, ‘sibling of the year’, ‘carer of the year’ and ‘innovation of the year’.

Sense Chief Executive, Richard Kramer, said:

“The Sense Awards recognise the achievements of people with complex disabilities. From young and upcoming YouTube stars who educate the public about living with a hearing and vision impairment, to local disability campaigners; previous Sense Awards winners have achieved remarkable things and it’s a pleasure to recognise them.

“We are now delighted to invite nominations for the 2019 Sense Awards and we can’t wait to see who this year’s winners will be.”

The Sense Awards will take place on Thursday 19 September at TouchBase Pears in Birmingham.  Developed by Sense, TouchBase Pears is a pioneering centre that provides specialist provision for people with disabilities and facilities for the whole community.

The public have until Monday 10 June, 5pm, to submit their nominations via:  

About Sense:

Sense is a national disability charity that supports people living with complex disabilities, including those who are deafblind, to communicate and experience the world. Sense supports children, young people and adults in their home and in the community, in their education and transition to adulthood and through its holidays, arts, sports and wellbeing programmes. In addition to practical support to families, Sense also offers information advice, short breaks and family events, and campaigns for the rights of people with complex disabilities to take part in life. For more information please visit

The nomination categories open to the public are:

Person of the Year

Do you know a person who is deafblind, has sensory impairments and/or has complex needs, who is excelling in a particular area? Have they overcome a great challenge, shown incredible passion or been exceptionally creative? Perhaps they have been successful in campaigning, fundraising, awareness-raising or volunteering?

Young Person of the Year

Do you know a person who is deafblind, has sensory impairments and/or complex needs under the age of 25 who has been particularly creative, overcome adversity with courage, or made a positive impact in their community? Perhaps they’ve learned a new skill and used this to help themselves in their everyday life or to help others?

Sibling of the Year

Do you know someone who’s supported their sibling to do something amazing? Have they created social or learning opportunities for their brother or sister? Do you know a child who’s taken on extra responsibilities? Perhaps they have shown exceptional compassion or understanding for their age?

Carer of the Year

Do you know a person or family member with caring responsibilities who is remarkable? Have they supported you, or someone you know, to do something new or exciting?

Volunteer of the Year

Has a Sense volunteer that you know shown great dedication and support? Have they developed new skills, shown commitment and exceeded expectations resulting in a positive impact on those they support?

Campaigner of the Year

Together, we campaign for the rights of people living with complex disabilities to take part in life. Do you know someone who has championed the rights of people living with complex disabilities, at a local and national level? From tackling loneliness of disabled people in the community to engaging with MPs about social care, we’d love to hear about disability campaigners.

Collaboration of the Year

Amazing things can happen when two organisations and teams come together with a shared vision in mind. Do you know an organisation or team that collaborated with someone to create something special for people with complex disabilities?

Individual Fundraiser of the Year

Sense’s work wouldn’t be possible without the support of our fundraisers. Do you know someone who’s dedicated their time to fundraise for Sense? Has someone created an exciting event to engage people?

Team Fundraiser of the Year

The support of our fundraisers is vital and team fundraising is always good fun! Perhaps you know a team that have raised an impressive amount of money for Sense and gone out of their way to support our cause?

Innovation of the Year

Do you know someone who has come up with a new idea, device, method or creative thoughts that supports people with complex disabilities? From finding creative new ways to connect people to supporting new ways of communication, we’d love to hear about any new innovations from across sectors.

Outstanding contribution to International Development

This award recognises outstanding achievements of staff and partners of Sense International. We’d love to hear about strategic and inspiring work that has raised awareness of deafblindness, brought new quality services to people with deafblindness and their families, initiatives that take innovative approaches to improve the lives of people with deafblindness or wins that have changed the national government’s approach. We are also keen to celebrate ‘unsung heroes’ making an exceptional contribution to work on deafblindness.