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MSWA Bulletin Magazine Spring 2021

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What is assistive technology and how can it help you? | Good health monitoring practices | Pain and pain management series: Part 2 | Farewell Marcus Stafford


STRATEGIC SUPPORTS AND RESIDENTIAL OPTIONS SUE SHAPLAND RN, BN, MSCN GENERAL MANAGER STRATEGIC SUPPORTS AND RESIDENTIAL OPTIONS “Only look back to see how far you have come.” Winnie the Pooh. Now, who knew Winnie the Pooh was so wise? How true is this great saying, and it applies in so many ways! There have – and will be – many times we reflect and remember where we have come from, but often we don’t do it enough. We are so busy looking forward and just doing the job, that we don’t stop to see what we have achieved and feel a bit proud. But we should. Take MSWA – we are 50 next year – that’s a long way to look back, but the journey is worth thinking about. Back in 1972, when MS was hard to diagnose and there were no treatments, a small number of WA folks established a support group. And look where we are now! There are over 12 treatments, diagnosis is much easier and MSWA now proudly supports people living with all neurological conditions. MSWA has grown significantly over the last 19 years in particular and experienced great success in so many ways, and that can be directly linked back to when Marcus Stafford joined the organisation as CEO. As you know Marcus said farewell to us in October; we all wish him well and he will be greatly missed! Under Marcus’ expertise and stewardship, with the support of the MSWA Board, management, and staff, we have achieved great success and risen to heights many can only dream of. At the core of this success has been the desire to advocate for, and support our Clients to have, a better quality of life and better outcomes. Pre-NDIS, MSWA allocated funds (raised through our events, raffles and of course the Mega Home Lottery) to supplement government funding. This allowed us to build new accommodation and services centres and of course to grow our commitment to neurological research. Looking back really shows us how far we have come and what has been achieved. Then it’s head down and follow the course as there’s so much more to be done! On a personal note, I joined MSWA in 2003, having been recruited by Marcus. The long list of achievements are certainly not lost on me. I would like to thank Marcus for being at the helm of what is now a super yacht and wish him all the best with his next chapter! We are really getting excited now as construction of the Albany development ploughs ahead and we plan to open in March next year. Both the supported accommodation units and the Services Centre will be amazing; I can’t wait to see the end product once it’s all fitted out. As most people have heard we have proudly committed million for neurological research this year – that is amazing in anyone’s language. We are proudly supporting a number of WA-based projects and we will keep you updated on their progress and any opportunities for participation. The recent Client Forum showcased some of the talent and we did film the session and the links will be shared for those interested. Spring has sprung, although winter was threatening to return at one stage, and Christmas is looming. I hope we all get some family time over the break and that COVID doesn’t spoil our fun. I think the last eighteen months have reaffirmed how great it is to live in WA! Take care, we look forward to a new year with hopefully more freedom to move around for those itching to travel. Please stay safe. 4

MEMBER & CLIENT SERVICES NICOLA WASHINGTON GENERAL MANAGER MEMBER & CLIENT SERVICES Welcome to the spring edition of our Member & Client Services Bulletin… and Christmas is almost here! The year is flying by, and we have been keeping busy with many exciting projects that are in the process of being implemented to deliver improved services to you, our Clients. Our Albany Services Centre and High-Support Accommodation facility is progressing well. I visited the site with Andrea Taylor at the end of September and it really is looking incredible. The space is fantastic and is going to be very special for our Clients to utilise services. It will also be a great place to work. We are already looking for expressions of interest from the local community across a number of roles. It’s a very exciting time and we are all looking forward to servicing the Great Southern region from this wonderful Centre and providing the much needed high-support accommodation with the 10 new units that are being built. We are also busy with the implementation of new IT systems across several of our business areas. We are upgrading and replacing our current systems to improve efficiency and service delivery. Our aim is to streamline our processes and improve our communication for both our staff and Clients to provide an improved experience for everyone. Implementations of these upgrades will continue well into 2022. Our Client Forum was held on 15 September and was a great success. We were very lucky to have presenters from ECU, Curtin University and the Perron Institute who provided great insight into the latest research and technology. MSWA is very proud to contribute its largest donation to research with a record million donated this year. This funding will continue to help and assist our partners with innovative research across neurological conditions. I would like to thank the staff involved in making this event enjoyable and successful. As always, we welcome your feedback and would love to hear from you about this event. Please email us at I would like to take this opportunity to wish a fond farewell to our CEO Marcus Stafford. Marcus has been an inspirational leader and has driven MSWA to be the successful organisation it is today, supporting people living with neuro conditions and helping to improve their lives. Thank you, Marcus, for your fantastic leadership and friendship – you will be missed. Enjoy the next chapter of your life and I hope you get a chance to improve your golf swing. Finally... Christmas. Yes, we are nearly there. The good news is that we will be holding our Client and Volunteer Christmas Party on Thursday, 2 December 2021. We missed our party last year, so we are looking forward to catching up with everyone and celebrating. Look out for more information on page 31. 5