Independent Citizen Award

On the occasion of its annual “Night for Independence Gala”, It is both the pleasure and the privilege of the Western New York Independent Living, Inc. Family of Agencies to honor a member of the disability community with our Independent Citizen Award.  The individual would have shown support, assistance and inspiration to others while demonstrating the five core values of this award: 

  • Exemplifying independence in the community, such as: by beginning a special project; by spearheading an awareness effort; or by gaining the support of decision-makers, for the benefit of others with disabilities or the general community.
  • Going above and beyond what would be expected to assist others, by offering personal experience or expertise, organizing individuals around an issue, enlisting partnerships, and/or revealing self-sacrificing work.
  • Remaining active in the community over an extended period, even after an initial success with an activity or major project.
  •  Rejecting others’ criticism or doubt, that potentially could have deterred the individual from striving to reach and achieve personal goals.
  •  Showing the world the value of one person’s actions by encouraging others to have a contributing, encouraging, and positive attitude about making the community a better place for all.

If you are aware of an individual with a disability who, you feel, would meet all these criteria, please contact Marykate Waringa of the WNY Independent Living’s Office of Community Engagement at 716-836-0822, extension 146; or email her with the candidate’s name, a paragraph about his/her qualifications and contact information, as well as YOUR name and contact information, to

Thank you for your willingness to help acknowledge deserving members of our community!