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'Intereach Open Day' poster

Lots of family fun at Intereach Open Day 

 

Deniliquin’s biggest community success story will be on display later this month, showcasing its achievements and informing the public about its activities and operations.
The Intereach Open Day will be held on Thursday, November 28. 

It is designed as a fun day for the family, with lots of entertainment, live music, give-aways and a few surprises.
Intereach CEO Keryn Fox said the organisation’s growth had been so rapid, especially in the past decade, that many people may not be aware of the vast range of services that it now provides. 

“We believe hosting an open day at our Deniliquin headquarters to showcase what we are all about is a way to increase our community involvement, and also a chance to thank the local community for all the support we receive,” Ms Fox said. 

At the open day there will be activities for all ages, from a jumping castle that the children will enjoy, to over 65s exercise classes.
There will be giant games, information tables, live music, give-aways, a free barbecue and refreshments.

“Everyone is welcome to this free, family-friendly event,” Ms Fox said.
“Our staff will be on hand so local people can learn more about Intereach’s services and the vast range of employment opportunities we now offer. 

“From humble beginnings when we were the Council for Social Development, we have had several name changes and a huge increase in the services we provide.
“Our headquarters proudly remains in Deniliquin, but Intereach now has 16 offices stretching throughout southern New South Wales and the Riverina, across the border into central and northern Victoria, and west into the Mallee. 

“Across our footprint, as well as providing vital services to all these communities we offer employment opportunities that support towns and their residents.
“So if you have ever wondered about the work we do or the careers we help develop, here is your chance to find out,” Ms Fox said. 

“Or if you just want a fun day out, pop along and enjoy our hospitality,” she added.
At the end of the open day the Intereach annual general meeting will be held, and the board’s current chair, Pat Fogarty, invites everyone to also attend this event. 

The Intereach Deniliquin office is located at the corner of Napier and Trickett Sts, and entry to the open day will be via the Trickett St carpark. 

If you would like more information about the open day or any of Intereach’s many community services, phone the toll free number 1300 488 226 or visit www.intereach.com.au 

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Man leaning on a car

Intereach to thank its volunteers

There is arguably no experience more rewarding than being a volunteer.

People who volunteer their time to help others generally acknowledge they receive more in return than they give. And those who are the beneficiaries of volunteerism are always extremely grateful for the help they receive.

However, it is also important to recognise the efforts of these volunteers, and that is exactly what Intereach will be doing in December. The region’s biggest community support provider has a big team of volunteers who help out in a range of areas. Their contribution to the community will be recognised with a multi-office Volunteer Morning Tea at 10.30am on Tuesday, December 3.
Intereach has grown from small beginnings in Deniliquin to now have office locations across the Riverina, and in northern Victoria. As a consequence, simultaneous morning tea events will be held at its offices in Deniliquin, Finley, Corowa, Albury, Griffith and Cootamundra. Also included in the recognition will be volunteers from Barham/Koondrook, Mathoura, Barooga and Leeton. Using the wonders of modern technology, the morning tea at each location will be connected with a video conference link.
Intereach CEO Keryn Fox said she looks forward to welcoming the organisation’s volunteers at the morning tea, where each will be presented with a small gift.

“It is impossible to calculate the real value of our volunteers, not only in monetary terms but also in the support they provide to the many people we work with.
“The morning tea is an opportunity to acknowledge their contribution to Intereach, and importantly their role in helping fellow members of our community,” Ms Fox said.

Intereach has more than 150 volunteers who contribute more than 600 hours a month of social support.
Those who are attending the morning tea are asked to RSVP by Wednesday, November 20 to the office they will be attending on the day.
Phone 1300 488 226 to RSVP.

For more than 45 years Intereach has been working to strengthen and support the community and improve the social and personal wellbeing of children, families, older people, carers and people with a disability.
Anyone who thinks they could use any level of support in any of these areas is encouraged to contact the head office at the corner of Napier and Trickett Sts in Deniliquin, or phone the toll free number on 1300 488 226.

Intereach is also constantly seeking volunteers to help with its many programs, and would love to hear from any residents who may be willing to help out.

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Woman Tarah Ross reaching into washing machine

Tarah has a place to call home

The southern NSW town of Cootamundra has felt like home for Tarah Ross since she moved there six years ago. Now, after signing the lease on her own two-bedroom unit a month ago, it really is a place for her to call home. 

Since leaving school 14 years ago Tarah has wanted her own place but it was always going to be more of a challenge for her than other young people her age. Tarah has a moderate intellectual disability and found the private rental market impossible to navigate. 

 However, with assistance from her disability employment provider Elouera Association and in-home supports funded through her National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) plan, Tarah has finally cracked the code. 

“I love it – I just couldn’t be happier,” she says. “There’s a few people from work living close by and it only takes me 10 minutes to walk into town.” 

 Now 32, Tarah was born in Sydney and moved to Junee with her family when she was three. She attended school there until Year 8 when she moved to a special school in Wagga Wagga. “The school in Wagga was amazing,” she says. “I made it all the way through to Year 12 and was school captain twice, in Year 10 and then again in Year 12.” 

 Since arriving in Cootamundra Tarah has been employed by Elouera full time in a variety of supported roles, mainly in its laundromat but also at the recycling facilities it runs in Cootamundra and Young. “I really like Coota, I’ve got good friends here now and it’s just a lot friendlier than any other place I’ve ever lived,” she says. 

Paula Miller, Tarah’s Local Area Coordinator from NDIS partner Intereach, says that before Tarah got her own place she had the opportunity to participate in an overnight stay program run by Elouera at its independent living centre “Tarah was doing two nights a week at the centre for a period of time prior to moving into her current accommodation and becoming independent,” Paula says.  

 Tarah was determined to prove her ability to live independently and over the course of a few months she did just that. With assessments and recommendations from an occupational therapist funded through her NDIS plan, Elouera also helped her learn how to save and budget properly. “When Tarah’s new plan came through in August this year one of her goals was to improve her daily living skills so she would be able to live independently,” Paula says. “We never thought she’d be in her own place so quickly – she’s certainly ticked that box!” 

 Elouera helped furnish Tarah’s unit and also helped her buy a fridge and TV, which she is paying back via regular deductions from her pay. Recently she bought herself an ironing board and she’s saving up to buy her own washing machine. 

 NDIS-funded support workers pop in after work every Tuesday and Friday to take her grocery shopping and cook enough meals to last her a week, and on Wednesday Tarah’s flat is cleaned while she’s at work. “They don’t have to do that much cleaning anymore, I’m a lot better at doing that myself now,” Tarah says. 

 Her NDIS plan also supports her to participate in a weekly cooking group and once a month she joins a group of Elouera participants to go ten-pin bowling or watch a movie. Each Monday she goes on her own to a drama group without any supports.   Right now Tarah is saving for a week’s assisted holiday to Tasmania in February next year with a group of around 10-15. Her NDIS plan will part-fund the support workers accompanying the group and she will pay her own travel and accommodation expenses. 

 “I’m really, really looking forward to that,” Tara says.  

 And best of all, she’ll have her own place to come back to. 

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Community Links team standing for group photo

Farewell to Ability Links

Intereach Ability Links winds up today (September 30) after five years delivering services to people with disability, their families and carers. 

With the help of Ability Links staff, affectionately known as ‘Linkers’, the popular program built on the strengths and skills of people with a disability and developed their networks in their own communities outside of the traditional disability services sector. 

Intereach  senior manager Mardi Chartres (former Ability Links project manager) said the program had been a great success across the Riverina Murray region. 

Intereach will now transition to Community Links, a program unique to the organisation. 

“We’ve seen the very real impact Ability Links can have on people in the community and now is the time to reflect and appreciate the good work this program achieved for people with a disability in our New South Wales communities,” Mardi said. 

“Ability Links has played a big role in supporting people with disability to reach their goals and making our communities more inclusive for everyone. 

“We’re now excited to be introducing our Community Links program, which will continue the good work of Ability Links but in a slightly different way.” 

Intereach CEO Keryn Fox said “Community Links is an extension of the good work our staff are already doing and builds on the Community Hubs model which is offered from our Deniliquin headquarters and some of our other smaller southern New South Wales offices”. 

“We’re rolling out Community Links across our entire footprint. People can walk into any one of our offices off the street and feel confident they’ll be linked to the local services or community group they need. 

“Community Links is designed to strengthen our foundation and reputation as a community leader in rural and regional areas. We’re committed to developing community infrastructure and supporting rural and regional communities, and Community Links is another exciting chapter in our organisation’s success story. 

The Community Links team is made up of ‘Community Linkers’. In many cases, Community Linkers will be the first point of contact for people accessing Intereach services for the first time. Linkers will, in many ways, be the ‘face of Intereach’, responsible for working with individuals, service providers and community groups to provide a locally based, single point of access to information, resources and services that are accessible to all members of the community. 

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