Zandra Vaccarino

Zandra is a social justice advocate who describes her family as her greatest treasure and has experience advocating for her son and mamma.

Zandra is a social justice advocate and believes that empowered, connected and supported individuals and their families are more resilient and able to create better outcomes for themselves and their families.

Zandra is the National Executive Officer of the New Zealand Down Syndrome Association (NZDSA) and values working with a range of disability and community groups to achieve shared goals and to represent the view of whānau at national stakeholder meetings.

Zandra values both her Italian and South African heritage and has lived in New Zealand for thirteen and a half years.  She describes her tūrangawaewae as Palmerston North.  Zandra says that her family is her greatest treasure and she has embraced the concept of whānau which consists of her husband, four children, a grandbaby and her Italian mamma.

In her downtime Zandra enjoys spending time with whānau and friends, planning and decorating for special events and cooking for special occasions.  She enjoys reading, movies, theatre, travelling and experiencing different cultures.

Zandra brings both her lived experience of advocating for her son and her mamma as well as her professional experience in community development, systemic advocacy and working with families, whānau and people who are disabled by society to access full citizenship rights to enjoy a good life.

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