The last two networking sessions for disability service providers for 2017 have been well-received by participants, who took the opportunity to share information and learn about best practice approaches from other providers in the sector.
The Department of Communities, Disability Services’ Sector Engagement and Development Directorate facilitated the series of Sector Space sessions.
These sessions support mid-level managers to build networks, engage with contracting staff and share knowledge about services and supports within a reformed and evolving disability support landscape.
Presenters spoke on topics such as accessible cities and promotion of inclusive communities at the fourth Sector Space series held in Busselton (for regional providers) and in West Perth (for metropolitan providers).
The Busselton session attracted 22 managers from Lower South West providers, while 60 managers attended the Perth session.
Based on the session’s theme, ‘Contemporary and Inclusive Services’, the participants first heard from Edith Cowan University PhD student Adam Johnson on the benefits of ‘Becoming the Most Accessible City in Australia (MARCIA): a Participatory Action Research Study’.
Caption: Adam Johnson presenting on the merits of MARCIA.
Sector participants said Adam’s talk helped them visualise how their respective organisations could build better connections and relationships to provide more opportunities for people with disability to co-design cities.
Participants then listened to DADAA Chief Executive Officer David Doyle, who spoke on ‘Disability culture at the centre of our communities’.
Participants said that David’s presentation opened their eyes on the fact that his organisation includes people with disability in their strategic direction, and prompted thinking about how this approach could be incorporated within their own organisations.
The third presenters were from the Chung Wah Association. Participants heard from Cassy Chin and Nunu Chen, who provided some history on their 108-year-old association and how it’s engaged people from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds.
Sector participants learnt that the organisation is now a disability service provider under the NDIS in WA. They said they enjoyed the presentation, which encouraged critical thinking on incorporating culturally-appropriate practices in services and supports.
For more information on future Sector Space sessions, phone Lana Naumovski on 9426 9307 or email her at firstname.lastname@example.org.