Latest news
Intereach Ability Links staff member Kerein Mullins sitting in a park with local participant Jason Evans.

Ability Links wins Premier’s Award

Ability Links NSW has been awarded a 2017 Premier’s Award for improving government services at a special ceremony in Sydney.

Intereach CEO Keryn Fox said the award recognised people who have worked on programs, initiatives, innovations or improvements that contribute to improving customer satisfaction with government services.

“This is an acknowledgment of the great support that is being provided for people with a disability in the community by Ability Links staff both at a state, and local level within the Riverina Murray region which is delivered by Intereach.

“Ability Links NSW is a truly unique program and our Linkers go above and beyond to support people with a disability reach their goals and dreams.”

“Every day our Linkers support people in the community to access services and make community connections as a part of reaching their goals. This all contributes to building better relationships with government services.”

To date, Ability Links providers across New South Wales have supported more than 80,000 participants across NSW.

“The program model is a winner” according to Urbis Director of Economic and Social Advisory Alison Wallace, who was responsible for the three-year evaluation of the Ability Links NSW program.

“In 25 years of evaluating government initiatives, I have rarely come across a program that has achieved so much in such a short space of time.”

“People with disability, their families and carers highly value Ability Links and told us countless stories of the positive impact it has had. The evaluation clearly shows that people’s lives really are being changed,” she said.

Pictured: Ability Links participant Jason and Intereach Linker Kerein Mullins are a great example of the opportunities that can be generated through community partnership and linkages. A collaboration between Intereach and Northcott Disability Services has enabled Jason to access affordable driving lessons in the local region with an appropriately modified vehicle.

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Intereach Ability Links staff member Kerein Mullins sitting in a park with local participant Jason Evans.

Ability Links wins Premier’s Award

Ability Links NSW has been awarded a 2017 Premier’s Award for improving government services at a special ceremony in Sydney.

Intereach CEO Keryn Fox said the award recognised people who have worked on programs, initiatives, innovations or improvements that contribute to improving customer satisfaction with government services.

“This is an acknowledgment of the great support that is being provided for people with a disability in the community by Ability Links staff both at a state, and local level within the Riverina Murray region which is delivered by Intereach.

“Ability Links NSW is a truly unique program and our Linkers go above and beyond to support people with a disability reach their goals and dreams.”

“Every day our Linkers support people in the community to access services and make community connections as a part of reaching their goals. This all contributes to building better relationships with government services.”

To date, Ability Links providers across New South Wales have supported more than 80,000 participants across NSW.

“The program model is a winner” according to Urbis Director of Economic and Social Advisory Alison Wallace, who was responsible for the three-year evaluation of the Ability Links NSW program.

“In 25 years of evaluating government initiatives, I have rarely come across a program that has achieved so much in such a short space of time.”

“People with disability, their families and carers highly value Ability Links and told us countless stories of the positive impact it has had. The evaluation clearly shows that people’s lives really are being changed,” she said.

Pictured: Ability Links participant Jason and Intereach Linker Kerein Mullins are a great example of the opportunities that can be generated through community partnership and linkages. A collaboration between Intereach and Northcott Disability Services has enabled Jason to access affordable driving lessons in the local region with an appropriately modified vehicle.

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NDIS Murrimbidgee/Far West (NSW) Info Sessions and Community Visits

These information sessions are designed to offer people general information about the National Disability Insurance Scheme. Sessions will cover topics such as:

  • What is the NDIS and how does it work?
  • Who is eligible and when can the scheme be accessed?
  • What kind of support can be accessed through the NDIS?
  • Where can I get more information?

Upcoming events will be held in:

Albury

Date: Wednesday 6 September 2017     

Time: 5.00pm – 6.30pm

Venue: Intereach Albury Office

Address: 553 David Street, Albury, NSW, 2640

 

Date: Thursday 7 September

Time: 10.30am – 12.00pm         

Venue: Intereach Albury Office

Address: 553 David Street, Albury, NSW, 2640

 

Date: Thursday 7 September

Time: 5.00pm – 6.30pm

Venue: Intereach Albury Office

Address: 553 David Street, Albury, NSW, 2640

 

Buronga

Date: Tuesday 12 September     

Time: 3.00pm – 5.00pm    

Venue: Intereach Buronga Office

Address: 2/10 Sturt Highway, NSW, Buronga, 2739

 

Euston

Date: Wednesday 13 September  

Time: 1.00pm – 3.00pm

Venue: Euston Club Resort

Address: 2/28 Nixon Street, Euston , NSW  2737

 

Balranald

Date: Thursday 14 September

Time: 1.00pm – 3.00pm  

Venue: Balranald Ex-Servicemans RSL Club

Address: 116 Market St, Balranald,  NSW 2715

 

Deniliquin

Date: Friday 15 September

Time: 11.00am – 12.30pm

Venue: Deniliquin Intereach Office

Address: Corner of Napier and Trickett Sts, Deniliquin, NSW, 2710

 

 

RSVPs are essential for these events. Friends, family members and carers are welcome to attend. Please advise the names of those attending, contact phone number and any support requirements.

For more information, or to RSVP, contact: Intereach on behalf of NDIS Partner Social Futures – Murrumbidgee area Email: LAC.Murrumbidgee@ndis.gov.au or telephone 1800 522 679

 

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NDIS Murrimbidgee/Far West (NSW) Info Sessions and Community Visits

These information sessions are designed to offer people general information about the National Disability Insurance Scheme. Sessions will cover topics such as:

  • What is the NDIS and how does it work?
  • Who is eligible and when can the scheme be accessed?
  • What kind of support can be accessed through the NDIS?
  • Where can I get more information?

Upcoming events will be held in:

Albury

Date: Wednesday 6 September 2017     

Time: 5.00pm – 6.30pm

Venue: Intereach Albury Office

Address: 553 David Street, Albury, NSW, 2640

 

Date: Thursday 7 September

Time: 10.30am – 12.00pm         

Venue: Intereach Albury Office

Address: 553 David Street, Albury, NSW, 2640

 

Date: Thursday 7 September

Time: 5.00pm – 6.30pm

Venue: Intereach Albury Office

Address: 553 David Street, Albury, NSW, 2640

 

Buronga

Date: Tuesday 12 September     

Time: 3.00pm – 5.00pm    

Venue: Intereach Buronga Office

Address: 2/10 Sturt Highway, NSW, Buronga, 2739

 

Euston

Date: Wednesday 13 September  

Time: 1.00pm – 3.00pm

Venue: Euston Club Resort

Address: 2/28 Nixon Street, Euston , NSW  2737

 

Balranald

Date: Thursday 14 September

Time: 1.00pm – 3.00pm  

Venue: Balranald Ex-Servicemans RSL Club

Address: 116 Market St, Balranald,  NSW 2715

 

Deniliquin

Date: Friday 15 September

Time: 11.00am – 12.30pm

Venue: Deniliquin Intereach Office

Address: Corner of Napier and Trickett Sts, Deniliquin, NSW, 2710

 

 

RSVPs are essential for these events. Friends, family members and carers are welcome to attend. Please advise the names of those attending, contact phone number and any support requirements.

For more information, or to RSVP, contact: Intereach on behalf of NDIS Partner Social Futures – Murrumbidgee area Email: LAC.Murrumbidgee@ndis.gov.au or telephone 1800 522 679

 

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Local people bringing local knowledge to the NDIS

Locally based Intereach staff are set to become the local faces of the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) which starts across the Murrumbidgee and Far Western areas of NSW this week.

The NDIS will work to support people with disability to participate in and contribute to social and economic life, as well as provide certainty that people with disability will receive the care and support they need over their lifetime. The NDIS provides a number of ways to assist people with disability to exercise choice, pursue their goals and the planning and delivery of their supports. One of the ways this is done is through Local Area Coordination (LAC).

Intereach is delivering the NDIS in the Murrumbidgee and Far West area on behalf of NDIS Partner Social Futures.

Intereach NDIS Local Area Coordinators will work alongside local people with disability by using their local knowledge to help people with disability advocate, plan, organise and access the support and services they need to live a good life.

A team will work across the Murrumbidgee and Far Western area from offices in Albury, Buronga, Corowa, Cootamundra, Deniliquin, Finley, Griffith and Wagga Wagga.

Intereach LAC staff will be available via appointment in community based locations.

In order to ensure a smooth transition to the NDIS in NSW, people in the Murrumbidgee and Far Western areas will transition according to an agreed phasing plan. More information can be found at: http://ndis.nsw.gov.au/ready-for-ndis/ndis-rollout/murrumbidgee/ or http://ndis.nsw.gov.au/ready-for-ndis/ndis-rollout/far-west/

For more information about the NDIS in the Murrumbidgee and Far Western NSW area

Email: LAC.Murrumbidgee@ndis.gov.au ,  or

Telephone: 1800 522 679

Information about the NDIS including eligibility and access requirements can be found on the national NDIS website

www.ndis.gov.au or by calling the NDIA on 1800 800 110.

 

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Local people bringing local knowledge to the NDIS

Locally based Intereach staff are set to become the local faces of the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) which starts across the Murrumbidgee and Far Western areas of NSW this week.

The NDIS will work to support people with disability to participate in and contribute to social and economic life, as well as provide certainty that people with disability will receive the care and support they need over their lifetime. The NDIS provides a number of ways to assist people with disability to exercise choice, pursue their goals and the planning and delivery of their supports. One of the ways this is done is through Local Area Coordination (LAC).

Intereach is delivering the NDIS in the Murrumbidgee and Far West area on behalf of NDIS Partner Social Futures.

Intereach NDIS Local Area Coordinators will work alongside local people with disability by using their local knowledge to help people with disability advocate, plan, organise and access the support and services they need to live a good life.

A team will work across the Murrumbidgee and Far Western area from offices in Albury, Buronga, Corowa, Cootamundra, Deniliquin, Finley, Griffith and Wagga Wagga.

Intereach LAC staff will be available via appointment in community based locations.

In order to ensure a smooth transition to the NDIS in NSW, people in the Murrumbidgee and Far Western areas will transition according to an agreed phasing plan. More information can be found at: http://ndis.nsw.gov.au/ready-for-ndis/ndis-rollout/murrumbidgee/ or http://ndis.nsw.gov.au/ready-for-ndis/ndis-rollout/far-west/

For more information about the NDIS in the Murrumbidgee and Far Western NSW area

Email: LAC.Murrumbidgee@ndis.gov.au ,  or

Telephone: 1800 522 679

Information about the NDIS including eligibility and access requirements can be found on the national NDIS website

www.ndis.gov.au or by calling the NDIA on 1800 800 110.

 

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NDIS Loddon (VIC) Info Sessions and Community Visits

Want to know more about the NDIS? Wondering where iVan is visiting this month? Read on!

NDIS 101 sessions

General information sessions about the NDIS are being delivered across the area. We call these our “NDIS 101 sessions” and they are aimed at people who haven’t attended an information session before or could do with a refresher now that we are actually rolling out the NDIS in our area. Upcoming NDIS 101 sessions will be held:

Echuca

Date: Thursday 21 September

Time: 9.30am to 11.00am

Address: Intereach Echuca office, 205 Hare St, Echuca

 

Date: Monday 9 October

Time: 11.00am – 12.30pm

Address: Intereach Echuca office, 205 Hare St, Echuca

 

Bendigo

Date: Monday 25 September

Time: 11.00am to 12.30pm

Address: Intereach Bendigo Office, 384 Hargreaves Street, Bendigo

 

Date: Monday 16 October

Time: 1.30pm – 3.00pm

Address: Intereach Bendigo Office, 384 Hargreaves Street, Bendigo

 

Castlemaine

Date: Monday 23 October

Time: 10.30am to 12pm

Intereach Castlemaine Office, 1 Halford Street, Castlemaine

 

Riddells Creek

Date: Monday 23 October

Time: 1.30pm – 3.00pm

Address: Riddells Creek Neighbourhood House, 59 Main Road

 

Maryborough

Date: Monday 30 October

Time: 11.00am – 12.30pm

Address: Maryborough Community House, 23 Primrose St, Maryborough

 

Bendigo FunLoong Fun Day

Date: Saturday 28 October,

Time: 11.00am – 2.00pm

Address:  Hargreaves Mall, Bendigo

 

To find out more about these sessions, or to RSVP, phone 1300 968 140 or email lac_loddon@intereach.com.au.

 

Where is iVan?

The LAC Loddon team will also be out and about in iVan the Information Van during June to answer your questions.

You can find the team at:

Bendigo

Date: Monday 25 September

Time: 2.00pm -3.30pm

Address: Bendigo Library, 259 Hargreaves St, Bendigo

 

Echuca

Date: Monday 9 October

Time: 1.30pm – 3.00pm

Address: Echuca Library, 310 Hare St, Echuca

 

Kangaroo Flat

Date: Monday 16 October

Time: 11.00am – 12.30pm

Address: Lansell Square, 267 High St, Kangaroo Flat

 

Eaglehawk Children’s Festival

Date: Friday 20 October

Time: 3.30pm – 6.30pm

Address:  Canterbury Park, 2 Simpson’s Rd, Eaglehawk

 

Maryborough Early Years Expo

Date: Saturday 21 October

Time: 10.00am – 1.00pm

Address: Maryborough Hub, 48 Burns St, Maryborough

 

Maryborough

Date: Monday 30 October

Time: 1.00pm – 2.00pm

Address: Maryborough Community House, 23 Primrose St, Maryborough

 

 

 

Do you want to keep up with news and events from the Loddon area as we implement NDIS LAC and ECEI?

Subscribe to LAC E-News (Loddon area)

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NDIS provider information sessions – for new providers

Are you interested in providing services to NDIS Participants in the Murrumbidgee and Far Western NSW areas? Are you considering registering with the NDIS as a services provider? Are you registered to provide services to NDIS participants? Are you currently providing services to NDIS participants?

The National Disability Insurance Scheme is rolling out progressively in Australia over the next two years.  In order to support individuals or organisations learn how to become providers, the National Disability Insurance Agency will be holding provider introductory sessions in line with the regional rollout.

The areas covered will include:

  • Overview of the NDIS and the participant pathway
  • How to register as a NDIS provider
  • Market information (including information about the Terms of Business, the provider portal, Reasonable and Necessary Decision Making and Payments and Pricing)

Non-registered providers are encouraged to attend.

 

Upcoming sessions will be held at:

Balranald

Date: Tuesday 20 June 2017

Time: 9.30 am to 11.30 am

Where: Lone Pine Room Balranald RSL Club

Address: 116 Market St, Balranald NSW 2715

RSVP: https://www.stickytickets.com.au/53907 or phone 0475 827 181

 

Dareton

Date: Wednesday 21  June 2017

Time: 10 am to 12 midday

Where: Coomealla Health Aboriginal Corp

Address: 51 Sturt Pl, Dareton, NSW 2717

RSVP: https://www.stickytickets.com.au/53908 or phone 0475 827 181

Organisations are asked to limit representatives to 1-2 at each session. Please contact us if you have any accessibility requests

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Disability is no barrier

The Wagga Daily Advertiser recently reported on a good news story, where local Wagga resident Kathy Fuller is not allowing her disability to get in the way of achieving her childhood dream. Kathy has engaged with the Intereach Ability Links Program to assist her in determining her goals. The role of Intereach Ability Links is to educate community groups and businesses to welcome those with a disability and to assist those with a disability to achieve their goals.

To read more about Miss Fuller and her ability to return to volunteer work and achieve a childhood dream, click on http://bit.ly/1XiwDVP

For more information about the Intereach Ability Links Program visit, http://bit.ly/1Ser0cY

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Multicultural Day in Deniliquin

Looking for something interesting to do in Deniliquin on Saturday 1 April?

Why not join us at the Deniliquin Multi Arts Centre for a day of multicultural food, dance and music!

The event aims to celebrate the cultural and ethnic diversity of our region and to encourage the participation and engagement of the whole community.
Entry to the event is free and tasting plates will be available at nominated prices.

There will also be a variety of crafts and cultural displays.

Children are welcome and colouring activities will be available.

When: Saturday 1 April 11am – 2pm

Where: Deniliquin Multi Arts Centre, Cressy St

Interested? For more information contact Martin Wilmshurst on 0417 603 385 or Wendy Johnston on 03 5890 5258.

 

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Support for marriage equality

Intereach supports our employees, volunteers, communities, and people we work with who identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex (LGBTI) and advocate for their rights to celebrate their relationships fully and without discrimination.
Intereach is committed to social justice and protects and promotes human rights by recognising that all people are free and equal in dignity and rights regardless of gender, sexuality, race, religion, culture or socioeconomic status.

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Ivan named as winner of competition

Introducing… iVan!

We are pleased to announce the winner of the #NameOurVan Competition, and it is… (drum roll please) Bridgette Scilini!

Bridgette’s winning name suggestion ‘iVan’ has won her an iPad mini.

Congratulations Bridgette and thank you to everyone who entered.

Intereach staff, and iVan, will be out across Greater Bendigo, Campaspe, Macedon Ranges, Mt Alexander, Central Goldfields and Loddon talking to local people about National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS).

Keep up to date with iVan’s community visits here:

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Participants and Providers work with NDIS to improve processes

The Board and Executive Management team of the National Disability Insurance Agency (NDIA) wish to provide information to the Scheme’s existing and potential participants, their families, carers and providers regarding major work that is underway to deliver a significantly upgraded quality of participant and provider experience in a way that remains consistent with maintaining the Scheme’s financial sustainability.

An improved participant and provider experience will be grounded in the NDIS’s aspiration to facilitate improved economic and social outcomes for participants. As was always the original intent of the NDIS, better outcomes for participants, based on the Scheme’s insurance approach are intended to produce a long term economic and social dividend for Australia. That was the vision on which the NDIS was founded. That is what the disability community supports. That is what we, our staff and community partners are committed to delivering.

Participants in the initial Trials, which started in 2013, are already reaping the benefits of their involvement with the NDIS. A survey of 23,400 NDIS participants, families and carers demonstrates these results. Participants who have been longer in the Scheme are becoming more independent; they are able to exercise greater choice and control; they are experiencing stronger social, educational and employment outcomes; children’s development has improved; and students are more able to attend mainstream classes.

Notwithstanding these positive results, it is now well recognised that before the commencement of transition to full scheme in July 2016, the quality of the NDIA’s internal preparation warranted significant improvement. The NDIA’s processes and systems have not resulted in a participant and provider experience during Transition that is of the consistently high standards that the NDIA expects. While the need to improve processes is not entirely unexpected given the ground breaking nature of the reform, the NDIA recognises the important need to learn from these early experiences and improve and adapt its processes as quickly as possible. The Board, management and staff of the NDIA are unequivocally committed to delivering a much better experience for participants and providers based on an outcomes driven approach.

To that end, since early April 2017, the NDIA has been working individually and in workshops with more than 200 participants, providers, peak disability bodies and other stakeholders from all States and Territories to identify what needs to improve and how that might occur. Productivity Commission submissions outlining improvement opportunities have also been recognised, as has feedback from the Independent Advisory Council and views expressed at the Joint Standing Committee.

From that process, 400 specific improvement ideas and 200 solution concepts have been generated. Detailed work is currently underway to incorporate participants’ and providers’ insights to ensure the NDIA delivers a high quality, outcomes focussed participant and provider experience that is simple, clear and accessible, at the same time as ensuring the Scheme’s financial sustainability. While a new integrated end to end approach has yet to be finally tested with participants and providers, the proposal is likely to include a greater outcomes focus throughout a participant’s life; more active involvement with communities; more face to face (rather than telephone) communications; fewer participant transfers; an easier to navigate portal; a more responsive call centre experience; and significantly improved interactions with providers and disability organisations. Having learned from the past, the final proposal will be tested with participants and providers before it goes live.

The NDIA is acting expeditiously to implement this revised and more integrated end to end approach for participants and providers. Many standalone improvements that are consistent with the proposed longer term approach will be put in place as soon as possible while we continue to bring new participants into the Scheme.

The NDIA is committed to getting the proposed approach right. As a result, full implementation, which will be dealt with as a matter of priority, may take somewhat longer because of the need to retrain staff; implement systems changes; and significantly improve communications.

The NDIA also wishes to assure participants, that despite misleading press reports, there is no policy directive to cut the amount of supports in plan packages. At all times the level of supports provided in a participant’s plan will be based on what is determined reasonable and necessary under the NDIS Act.

During the interim period, until the full proposal can be implemented, the NDIA will work hard to actively engage with stakeholders and to provide information on progress. In turn, we ask for your ongoing goodwill and patience.

Yours sincerely

David Bowen

Chief Executive Officer

National Disability Insurance Agency

 

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