Chief Executive Officer update - 16 May 2022

Posted on 16 May 2022 by

Hi there,

Welcome to this month’s edition of News@Yooralla.

The month of May marks Huntington’s Awareness month, a time to bring much needed attention to the impacts Huntington’s Disease has on adults and their families. We are incredibly passionate about learning more about supporting people with progressive neurological disorders and it was great to see some of our neurological support (NSS) residents and staff all glammed up to attend the annual Huntington’s Victoria Annual Gala Ball last Friday. This was the first of the events we will be participating in this month, with our NSS sites also raising awareness as they ‘Go Blue on May 22’—wearing blue clothing and decorating their sites. We’ll share pictures of these special events across our website and social media channels in the coming weeks and you can find out more about other events taking place over the month.

May 12 also marks International Nurses Day, a great opportunity to recognise the tireless work of our nursing staff at Yooralla—particularly those who support our high and complex needs customers at our NSS and Ventilator Assisted Support Service (VASS). I would like to share my appreciation of the remarkable role our nurses play in improving the health and wellbeing of our clients. Read more about the work of our incredible nurses.

Last month, with many donors and friends in attendance, we launched our Case for Support: A Hopeful and Resilient Future – Supporting people with disability to live the life they choose. This articulates the six major areas of need where an individual’s National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) funding, or ours, isn’t adequate. The Case for Support targets philanthropists seeking to support us extend, complement and build-on what is already covered in the NDIS. Philanthropic funds play a vital role in stimulating innovation and extending NDIS supports to vulnerable communities. Yooralla is so grateful to our donors for their help - in the last year, they have funded assistive technology loan schemes, inreach to young people in out of home care, resources and supports for LGBTQIA+ community, simulation equipment to train our workforce in dealing with emergencies and software to help clients track and achieve their goals.

At the launch, our special guest speaker Carly Findlay OAM, shared her lived experience as a person with disability—speaking from her own experiences and perspectives from friends in the disability community about some of the challenges they face. You can read more about the launch event and if anything interests you in the case, please reach out to me for a chat.

I also recently had the opportunity to speak with NDS Victoria State Manager Sarah Fordyce on the NDS Safer and Stronger podcast about what Yooralla has learned so far from COVID-19 and our thoughts and preparations for the future as COVID becomes an endemic disease. You can listen to the episode here.

Finally, it was a proud moment for me to see the State Government’s budget announcement this week which included substantial funding to transition people with disability out of hospital and into community-based accommodation. Our team has been working tirelessly on the hospital transition program and this announcement is a credit to their work developing the program model and early success stories of like George’s. I look forward to hearing more stories about how this program changes the lives of many people with disability.

Please enjoy this edition of the newsletter and stay safe and well.

Yooralla CEO Terry Symonds

Terry Symonds
Chief Executive Officer


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