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Late in 2022, the board felt, as part of a realignment of the culture of our organisation, that we needed to re-activate the Clients and Carers Engagement Group (C&CEG). This was needed to provide feedback from everybody in the organisation, to the board and executive as to how we were going. 

As a structure, the C&CEG was to be chaired by a member of the board, have a representative of the executive present, (usually the CEO), and have a variety of our clients and carers (be they support workers or family) as part of the group. As I was a board member at the time, as well as a client with a disability, I was asked to chair the group.

We have managed to work very co-operatively together and have come out with some very important initiatives that have been fed back to the board and executive in terms marketing, administration and client preferences.

Some of the ideas that have come to fruition are:

C&CEG members observing and presenting to the board.

C&CEG members taking part in the hiring process of support workers

Clients giving their preferences on things like recreational trips, diversity , and support worker skills and training.

Most meetings have a presentation from a staff member on what they do in the organisation and this often leads to valuable discussions. One such discussion with one of the support workers in the group, lead to us picking up a fault in our rostering system that had all the experts working feverishly to fix.

Several other discussions have lead to articles in the newsletter on safety on public transport and other subjects.

There are also plans to hold tutorials on cyber security; a very important subject in today’s world, where many of us with compromised mobility spend a great deal of our time.

Marketing has also been a focus of the group, as it is important to us how our organisation is portrayed. We feel it is important to emphasise that we keep the training of our support workers up-to-date and comply with all NDIS standards and have passed their audits and inspections. We felt we could get the message across with client and support worker testimonials or interviews on the socials. Look out for this in the near future.

I am no longer the chair of C&CEG, because at the end of 2023 I had run my full time on the board under our constitution (9 years). We now have another board member in that role, who is proving to be very suited to the position. I have remained as part of the group as I feel that this is a very important part of “keeping it real” for the board and executive. We are always on the look-out for new members, so if you feel you have something to say, good or bad, we need you. Please contact CB in the office to join us. 

It is so important to remember that we are looking after people with disabilities before anything else. That is why we are a not-for-profit organisation. Everything we do is to benefit our clients.

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