Earlier this year, in a co-design approach with the Local Area Accessibility Service (Local Area Coordinator Jenny Hogg) NKMP developed S.O.A.R. (Securing Our Aspirational Realities).
S.O.A.R. has been designed to enable us to better understand and grow our agency knowledge around working alongside whanau with disabilities to appreciate more fully the service options and needs they have. Jack Lovett-Hurst, who suffers from muscular dystrophy and has been in a wheelchair since the age of two, has come on board to lead this work.
He is working in three key areas: A S.O.A.R. Facebook page, a weekly radio show and the facilitation of whanau hui for 16-25 year olds living with a disability and/or their whanau to discuss service requirements. It is the intention that S.O.A.R. will be a current voice on disability in Southland and will provide NKMP with new awareness/learning that leads to innovative ways of designing and rolling out our services – services the whole whanau can use!
Jack has since organized and facilitated two meetings, which have included a workshop on barriers (to employment), challenges and successes, what acceptance and belonging means and how employers can better support employees who have a disability.
The collective information gathered at this hui is now being published in a handout for employers.
Working alongside Mr Lovett-Hurst is our extraordinary Disability Kaiawhina Sandra Stiles, who supports people with disabilities and offers information, advocacy and advice and creates tailored plans to meet the client’s desired outcomes.
Sandra says her role is rewarding and she enjoys supporting people and being able to help. “I enjoy putting a smile on someone’s face.”
To get in touch with us phone (03) 214 5260 or free phone 0800 925 242, visit our website or call in and see us at 92 Spey Street, Invercargill.