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MSWA Bulletin Magazine Summer 2023

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Recognising our Difference Makers | Let your voice be heard for a better NDIS | Stationary riders cycle to glory | Upgraded gym opens up options


OUR COMMUNITY DIFFERENCE MAKER OF THE YEAR We held the inaugural Difference Maker Awards at the end of 2022 to celebrate the special people who live out MSWA’s purpose and vision in everything they do. Of the four categories, The Difference Maker Award was extra special as it was nominated by you – our Clients! We were overwhelmed with more than 100 responses sharing gratitude for our hard-working frontline teams, which resulted in nine deserving finalists: / Dajana Tesevic, Counsellor & Health Education and Peer Support Coordinator / Emma Chapman, Client Service Coordinator / Oliver Guttinger, Accredited Exercise Physiologist / Lisa Reardon, Social Welfare Officer / (Elle) Niramon Kullasin, Community Support Worker / Liesl Murdoch, Senior Counsellor / Karen Brown, Counsellor Including our two worthy winners: / Joanne Ingham, Community Support Worker (Metro Lower South Team) / Suzanne Rice, Physiotherapist (Albany) With such tight competition, it was impossible to choose just one! We took some time to learn a little bit more about our award recipients and find out what this recognition means to them. JOANNE INGHAM It is Joanne’s mission in life to assist her Clients to maintain their independence for as long as possible through her Care Support role, in which she dedicates 100 per cent of herself to every Client in every session. Although a natural-born care giver, Care Support has not always been Joanne’s career, having pivoted from decades in business ownership and bookkeeping. The career transition was inspired by her experience caring for her mother post-operation, as well as a dear family friend. “[Mum] had her best friend from Spain living with her because she was terminal from cancer, so I was running upstairs downstairs between the two of them and I quite enjoyed it,” Joanne said. “There were a lot of laughs and of course a bit of sadness.” “To be able to help someone and make them happier, make them feel more valued and just to be of assistance is what I get out of it.” Inspired, Joanne completed her studies remotely during the COVID-19 lockdowns, selected MSWA from a number of job offers and hasn’t looked back. “I picked MSWA because it was more than just aged care,” she said, “my mum has since been diagnosed with dementia as well, so I picked MSWA because it was neurological.” “It’s a hard job, but it is a lovely job to think that you have helped someone.” “Sometimes I visit a Client and they may not have had a good couple of days, but the look on their face when they see you, it is just everything.” Joanne with her Client Sue Bryan, who nominated the care support worker for always going “above and beyond” in her duties to make a significantly positive impact on her life. Joanne said she was shocked and delighted to be named one of the Difference Makers Award for 2022. “I still have a big grin on my face. I have never won anything, so it was amazing,” she said. “I do work really hard, and I always give Clients my 100 per cent attention – I think that is really important.” “[The award] made me feel thanked for that effort, I just feel appreciated.” The fact the award was Client nominated made it that much more special, “because they are the ones I am doing it for” according to Joanne. “But it is not just me, we are all a team, and we all get up every morning and do what we need to do to help these guys with their everyday lives,” she said. Joanne had a special message to share with her Clients, particularly the ones who nominated her. “Thank you all so much, you are all wonderful,” she said, “I love them all in their own little ways.” “It gives me pleasure to go to work to be with these people and I am sure I get just as much out of them as they do with me because I am forever laughing with them.” An excerpt of what our Clients had to say about Joanne: “Jo remembers my quirky behaviors due to my neuro conditions, which takes a lot of understanding and patience… Since day one of having Jo as my support worker, she has treated me as Jo would like her own mother treated under similar circumstances.” “She shows me the utmost respect and we laugh, and she makes a huge difference to my day. Jo is completely present in the moment and I value and look forward to our time together.” “Jo always goes the extra mile and doesn't treat it like a job as she is always 100 per cent present.” 10 11