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Your Stories is giving you the opportunity to reflect on and share your experiences about what it’s been like to work for the NSW Government in the disability sector.

You might have a funny anecdote, an uplifting experience with a colleague or a moving encounter that you would like to share. Take a look below at some of the stories already received. We’d love to hear from you too. Share your story.

Recently submitted stories - Page 5

 Maxine Mackay

Maxine Mackay

Casework Consultant

I just hope that the NGO’s do a fantastic job and remember to put the families/individuals at the forefront and be good listeners. It takes a while to develop trusting relationships so be prepared to be patient. It could take several weeks to get a conversation going; most of all they work with the person’s abilities and not their deficits.

I hope the NGO’s bring transparency, sincerity. That they will be there for the right reasons and make it easier for people to transition and access what they need for a good life. Inclusion is important and they need to ensure that people with disabilities become visible and valued members of their community. Fair go for them!

What ever happens in the future, I will still be an advocate for my communities long after ADHC has gone.

Jason Tavares

Jason Tavares

Senior Project Officer

I loved the staff and clients soccer days that ISP (Integrated Services Program) used to have twice a year. Everyone used to have a fantastic time; so much so that even the absconders would stay around! Who would have thought doing something fun would make people stay???

Objectively speaking, the only down side was ‘that’ certain point in the game when those of us overly competitive types (well really just some of us staff) decided our team needed to win. As fun as that was maybe we should have toned it down a bit when people decided to ‘take a break’ because of how competitive it was getting!

Matt Leaver

Matt Leaver

A/Manager of Accommodation and Respite

A favourite achievement came when I was a Team Leader in the Integrated Services Program (ISP).

I worked with a middle-aged person who entered the program after being predominantly in custody or on a good behaviour bond since their youth. The person had committed a range of offences and presented challenges for the support team. The dedicated teams from the clinical and accommodation arms of ISP worked through the complex situation. Using an integrated structure of intensive support, we identified the systemic and behavioural barriers contributing to the person's recurrent offending.

With ISP's support the person turned their life around and marked meaningful milestones. They celebrated their birthday for the first time in memory, and commemorated the first year they spent out of prison since their youth. Almost 4 years later the individual remains out of jail and living in their own home with drop-in support from an NGO.

Sonya Parter

Sonya Parter

Senior Project Officer

In my current role as a Senior Project Officer working on the Aboriginal Disability Programs I have the ability to work with our Aboriginal staff in rolling out ‘Getting Our Mob NDIS Ready gatherings/conferences. It’s been so great to work with a bunch of committee members and everyone else that comes in and goes over and above to get these gatherings happening. The greatest satisfaction is hearing the attendees talk about how much they have enjoyed the conference/gathering. The children who attend don’t want to leave because they have an amazing time, get to see families relaxed and catching up with other families and friends they haven’t seen in years. Most of all, they understand the NDIS changes that are coming now and we are able to have follow up workshops.

Claire Lin

Claire Lin

Administration Assistant

I began work at FACS in 2011 in the Community Access Team where I am an Administration Assistant. I started at FACS completing work experience through my Jobsupport Transition to Work program once I finished School. This was a great opportunity for me to learn and develop new skills.

I must have done well because I was offered a paid job with FACS. When I started at FACS I was assisted by my Jobsupport trainer who helped me to learn my duties. Now I can complete them independently and this makes me very proud.

My team members are one of my favourite things about work, they help me when I need it and they make me laugh. Since working I have been able to save my money for the things I like, such as going out for lunch and shopping for clothes.

Craig Maynard

Craig Maynard

Behaviour Support Practitioner

I really hope there will be people who can encourage people with disability to ‘give it a go’, think outside of the box and hire people who work outside of disability for a sense of normal life. I hope that people with disability can catch on with what they want to do in life and feel part of an inclusive community.

Lastly, I also hope people with disability will be able to get employment, raise their standards of living, be able to travel and do the things that the majority of the population takes for granted.

Barbie Bates

Barbie Bates

From a Community Services perspective....

Although I’ve been working in FACS for 10 years now, for many years I worked with the ADHC therapists from my position in Health and NGOs.

We worked together with common clients and on the Western Sydney ECICP Regional Committee.

I've always found the therapists to be knowledgeable, compassionate, insightful, and more than willing to share the task.

Donna Chevell

Donna Chevell

Project Officer

Throughout my ADHC journey I have been in the unique position to witness, participate in and support some amazing experiences with our clients. I have laughed, cried, been shocked, been scared, been outraged, been proud and above all been humbled. The clients I have worked with have taught me life lessons in patience, values, dignity and perseverance. To be part of this organisation and to have made a quality contribution to society’s most vulnerable people has been a very rewarding experience. I am truly sad to see this journey end.

Ricky Chan

Rashne D'Mello

A/Coordinator Accommodation & Respite

I started working in ADHC as a volunteer in 2009 and used my volunteer experience to get a role as a community support worker. I’ve since moved on from this role however my biggest ‘take-home message’ came from the mentoring I received from my manager. She instilled in me the importance of always working with an open mind and never accepting ‘no’ for an answer. This has laid the foundations for how I approach my work and the example I like to set for the staff I manage.

I regularly put this into practice by trying different things with clients and introduce new activities in their lives. My goal is for them to try new activities and use this trial and error process to find activities they liked. For example, we would often find ourselves in a place where we relied on internal transport to facilitate clients going into the community but when the transport was double booked, the clients often missed out on their outing. To get around this I started to use public transport to help clients integrate in the community; we basically we used buses, trains and ferries to visit the community instead of the car. This was a huge achievement as it maximised the time they spent doing what they loved; especially those individuals in wheelchairs.

An added upshot of this is that the clients gradually became better integrated with community living. Through this, we often found that the simple use of public transport was actually an adventure in itself for the clients!

Carolyn Dmello

Carolyn D'Mello

Service Support Development Officer

I’ve had the good fortune of working in different roles – I commenced as a Social Worker at Marsden Centre. Having experienced life for children and young people with disabilities in a large residential centre, I moved to the community working in several roles across case management, managerial and senior project officer roles.

I initiated, and together with my case management team, implemented the Building Inclusive Community in Auburn Pilot Project. This paved the way across all ADHC business streams in the former ADHC Metro North to adopt the methodology of the project (i.e. place based approach, working with all of community & utilising the principles of Asset Based Community Development). This has been adopted by numerous agencies across the state. The Auburn Project went on to be awarded the ‘Most Innovative’ project across ADHC Metro North.

After working in a role within local government I returned to FACS because I greatly appreciate what we had in State Govt. I’m now an SSDO with Community Investment and Reform Team in Nepean Blue Mountains, which is the first District to roll-out the NDIS for children 0 -17yrs.

I started off at Marsden Centre, Westmead; moved to Penrith CST, then to Parramatta and now back at Penrith; a full circle. It’s been an incredible journey! A journey that has helped me jumpstart my future career going forward.

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Page last modified by on February 22, 2018 at 1:17 pm