news _muse by hjkuiw354


									                                                                                                      Christmas 2008 Issue 13

                                                               news & muse
The “Cuppa Tea” project               1
Vale – John Robert Orr                2
The Cascade Visitor Centre            2
Board Changes                         2
Senator Abetz entertains              3
Down at the School Farm               3
An open letter to Margaret Geeves     3
Graeme’s outback adventure            4
Human Resources                       4
A walk on the Silver Falls Track      5
From the CEO’s desk                   5
The Melbourne Cup with Ageing in Place 6
Acorn action                          6
The AFL grand final decorations       7
Staff Profile – Ian Hopkins           7
Editor’s Epilogue                     8

                                           “Now for a nice cuppa” – Ian Rayner and his team mate

                                           The “Cuppa Tea” project
                                           The Cuppa tea project, under the direction of teacher and ceramicist Jude Maisch, was held at
   Seasons Greetings                       Oakdale Lodge. A very keen group of Oakdale clients made wonderful terracotta cups, helped by
                                           a class of Grade 10 MacKillop College students and their teacher. Graeme English’s sister, Margaret,
     The Board & Management                and staff Chris, Jeanette, Jackie, Natalie and Tracey also helped, and provided lunch for everyone.
                                           The pairs all made cups by pinching the clay, adding coils and attaching handles. They have since
  Of Oakdale Services Tasmania             been glazed and decorated.

               Wish you all                Jude is taking this project to many other groups around Hobart, the sessions culminating in a tea
                                           party. Eventually there will be opportunities for Cuppa Tea Groups to meet together, celebrating
        A Merry Christmas &                their creativity over a cuppa from their own cups.

          a Happy New Year                 The students were wonderful: attentive, co-operative, patient and thoughtful - a credit to
                                           themselves and their school. It was obvious from the fantastic speeches of thanks given by some
                                           of the clients that they enjoyed the day and made some new friends.

                                           [Thanks to Jude Maisch for this `article]
  2               Oakdale Services Tasmania news & muse    Christmas 2008

                                           The Degraves Museum has memorabilia
   Vale – John Robert Orr                  depicting how the Cascade Brewery
                                           has evolved from his vision in 1824 to
   Oakdale Services Tasmania records       modern times. Degraves selected the
   with regret the passing of John         spot with lush land and fresh water from
   Robert “Jack” Orr.                      the mountain. He also built timber and
                                           flour mills, a water supply for the city
   Jack was Manager of Oakdale Lodge       and the Theatre Royal. Today Cascade
   from 1970 until 1988. During that       produces several varieties of beer, and
   time Jack instilled in the residents    the men in the group wanted to find the
   of Oakdale Lodge a sense of family      beer that appealed most to their taste
   and home and encouraged people          buds, whilst the women were found
   to look beyond their disability in      looking at the many labels, photos
   setting and achieving their goals.      and recorded documents displayed             “Reflecting” – Ian and Don
                                           throughout the room.
                                                                                        queries on equipment and maintenance
   Many residents joined with staff to
                                                                                        issues. He also provided support and
   attend Jack’s funeral.                  An outdoor transport museum houses
                                                                                        advice in the fine-tuning of the H&S
                                           vintage vehicles, a horse dray, and van.
                                                                                        system, particularly in regard to Essential
   The    Board,     Residents    and      Peter Harvey and David Gigney sat
                                                                                        Maintenance, Compliance & Fire System
   Management of Oakdale Services          inside to admire it, and try to capture
                                                                                        matters, including dealing with the many
   Tasmania extend our sincere             a little of what it might have been like
                                                                                        standards required of this work, and the
   condolences to Viv and family.          back in those days, delivering barrels
                                                                                        myriad of document pro-forma.
                                           to Hobart Town’s hotels. Strolling
                                           through the Heritage Gardens they
                                                                                        Due to pressure of other commitments,
The Cascade Visitor Centre                 stood at a memorial sculpture, carved
                                                                                        Ian has, with some regret, retired from
                                           with the story of Degraves journey
                                                                                        the Board. It is timely to repeat the words
The Cascade Visitor Centre situated        from England to Tasmania. David, their
                                                                                        from the Chairman’s Report to the last
in South Hobart offers a wealth of         guide, was well versed in the history
                                                                                        AGM: “Ian’s considered approach on many
history. Once the brewery manager’s        and had many a story, some bad, most
                                                                                        matters has been of great value to the
residence, nowadays it includes a          good to tell.
                                                                                        Board, and in particular his knowledge of
museum dedicated to Peter Degraves,
                                                                                        the building industry has been extremely
the founder of The Cascade Brewery,        Ageing in Place gathered by the atrium
                                                                                        helpful during the course of the building
Australia’s oldest brewery. The clients    windows admiring the castle-like brewery,
                                                                                        program, and more generally of asset
of Ageing in Place enjoyed a pleasant      a perfect place to have photos taken, and
                                                                                        maintenance, in recent years.”
outing to the Centre and experienced       who would give up an opportunity to
a most interesting tour of the Peter       record this great tour?
                                                                                        Don Mitchell was a member of the RCWA
Degraves Museum, Transport Museum
                                                                                        since the early 1950’s, where he served
and the Heritage garden. Peter Harvey,
                                                                                        as Treasurer and later as President of the
Elizabeth Gabriel, Peter Dunkley and
                                                                                        Southern Regional Committee.
David Gigney and staff Jeanette and
Chris enjoyed having their own guide,      Board Changes                                With the inception of Oakdale Services as
David, for the informative tour.
                                                                                        a separate entity in 1992, Don became an
                                           At the Board Meeting after the 2008 Annual
                                                                                        Oakdale Board member, and remained
                                           General Meeting the resignations of two
                                                                                        on the Board until his retirement at the
                                           long serving Board members, Ian Eadie
                                                                                        last AGM.
                                           and Don Mitchell, were accepted.
                                                                                        Don served as Treasurer of Oakdale from
                                           Ian was a Director of the Company from
                                                                                        1993 to 1996, when the organisation was
                                           March 1999. During this time he was
                                                                                        undergoing profound cultural change,
                                           Convenor of the Occupational Health &
                                                                                        as well as having changed its legal form,
                                           Safety Committee, a member of the Audit
                                                                                        and has served on various Board sub-
                                           & Strategic Planning Committee and for
                                                                                        committees in the time since.
                                           a time he was almost a one-man Asset
                                           Management Committee.
                                                                                        To again quote from the Chairman: “Now
                                                                                        (doubly) well into retirement, among
                                           As a professional engineer, Ian has been
                                                                                        his many other roles with Oakdale, Don
“Cheers” – David & Peter H                 Paul Byrne’s on-call support, covering
                                                                                        provides a strong corporate memory of
                                                      Oakdale Services Tasmania news & muse                     Christmas 2008              3
our organisational antecedents as well as
our own beginnings, and will hopefully be
a resource for us to draw upon for a good
time to come, albeit in an informal capacity.”

Their departure left vacancies on the
Board which OST wished to fill. There are
also other unfilled vacancies which have
arisen over the past 12 months or so. The
Board had decided not to fill these until the
financial crisis which had threatened OST’s
existence had been resolved. With that
behind us it was time to proceed.

In October OST welcomed back to the Board
David Dunkley, a previous long serving
Board member. David is currently resident in
Tonga, so there are some new and interesting
challenges to ensure his involvement on
the Board. Rapidly evolving technology has       “What are those two laughing about?”- David, Lindsay, Senator Abetz and Elizabeth.
provided the vehicle to do this.
                                                 Senator Abetz took the opportunity to                 Down at the School Farm
The Board is also talking to a number of         acknowledge Tim Brickhill for the painting
                                                                                                       ‘Ageing in Place’ visited the Bridgewater
people who have expressed interest in            of the Myer building which Tim gave to him
                                                                                                       High School Farm recently on a community
joining, and these new appointments              on a previous visit to the Lodge.
                                                                                                       outing; the students from the school were
should be finalised early in the New Year.
                                                                                                       both hosts and guides for the day.
                                                 Tim was unfortunately unable to attend
This will result in a very different looking     the morning tea, but Senator Abetz has
                                                                                                       Students Ariel and Jess introduced
Board as we continue to move forward             invited him to visit with a group another
                                                                                                       themselves to Peter Harvey, Elizabeth
to the challenges associated with the            time, when he can show Tim the picture
                                                                                                       Gabriel, David Gigney and staff member
implementation of the KPMG Report                hanging in his office.
                                                                                                       Christine for the morning tour and invited
recommendations and a promised State/
                                                                                                       them to experience a bit of everyday farm
Federal Government boost in revenue to
                                                                                                       life with them.
the sector.

                                                 An open letter to Margaret Geeves
                                                 Dear Margaret,
Senator Abetz entertains                         Further to your letter of September 9 2008 where you have tendered your resignation
                                                 from the Client policy Committee. I assure you that it is with an equal measure of “…very
An invitation was extended to Elizabeth
                                                 real regret...” that your resignation is accepted.
Gabriel, David Gigney and Lindsay
Appledorf to have morning tea with
                                                 Expressing appreciation for such dedicated service that has spanned in excess of fifty years
Senator Eric Abetz. Lindsay was very
                                                 seems grossly inadequate. We can however reflect on the very significant contribution
happy to accept the invitation on behalf
                                                 that you have made in bringing to fruition not only the development of Oakdale Lodge,
of the group.
                                                 the services and amenities provided, but to also have been so actively involved with the
                                                 evolution of the organisation throughout the years.
The morning tea was at the Senator’s office
in Davey Street. He welcomed the group
                                                 Your commitment to people with a disability through the RCWA (TCID), to Oakdale Services
and invited them to join him. Morning tea
                                                 and the clients we support has spanned more than half a life-time. The significance of
was lovely and the conversation warm and
                                                 that commitment will endure well into the future.
friendly. Lindsay was telling Eric about his
friends, Simon and Patrick Wiggins who
                                                 Yours sincerely
both play football. David spoke about his
holiday trips and rally driving. Elizabeth
                                                 Robert Allen                 Paul Byrne                       Arthur Jones
enjoyed her cuppa tea and asked for a
                                                 CHAIRMAN                     CHIEF EXECUTIVE                  CONVENOR (Client Policy Committee)
photo of the Senator.
 4              Oakdale Services Tasmania news & muse           Christmas 2008

                                                Graeme’s outback                                Airport. Graeme caught the plane back to
                                                adventure                                       Hobart and David flew back to Alice Springs
                                                                                                the next day.
                                                Graeme English flew from Hobart to
                                                Adelaide to embark on his “trip of a            [Thanks to David English for this article]
                                                lifetime”; to take the Ghan train trip from
                                                Darwin to Adelaide. Graeme joined his
                                                brother, David, at Adelaide and later
                                                that evening they flew to Darwin. Next
                                                morning they boarded the Ghan train and         Human Resources
                                                departed for Alice Springs.
                                                                                                Hello all
                                                They pulled into Katherine Station later that
“Lovely weather for a hay ride…” – Elizabeth    afternoon and took a bus to the Katherine       I am staggering towards the end of
                                                Gorge. From there they boarded a tour boat      another year, which has been a very busy
To start the day a hay ride was arranged.
                                                and explored the first Gorge. Changing          one for Human Resources as it has been
Dean, who is the farm overseer, drove the
                                                boats they next explored the second Gorge       for you, I’m sure.
tractor. He really made sure that everyone
                                                then retraced their steps to the train.
had fun, and they did. Elizabeth enjoying
                                                                                                To Fiona Saward (Certificate 3) and Tina
negotiating the bends on the track with a
                                                The pair then travelled on to Alice Springs     Chandler and Maureen Challis (both
laugh each time Dean turned the tractor.
                                                having dinner and a good night’s sleep.         Certificate 4) congratulations on earning
                                                They arrived in Alice Springs at 8.00 am and    your Certificates in Disability Work. Craig
Walking around the farm we saw the
                                                walked to David’s place, where they stayed      McCarthy and Jane Wilson are due to
animals which included pigs feeding in
                                                for 3 days.                                     complete their certificates in December,
their sties, with the students preparing
                                                                                                so congratulations in advance! I would
them for shows. Moving on to the nursery,
                                                During that time they toured the Desert         like to thank all staff members who have
Elizabeth was delighted that she could
                                                Wildlife Park, Flying Doctor Base and           attended training this year. I realise it is
pat the baby lambs, and Peter had the
                                                Reptile Centre, where Graeme had a big          difficult to fit this in around your shifts
opportunity to feed a lamb and, being the
                                                olive python crawl over his shoulders.          and home time, but it is important that
farm lad that he is, took the challenge.
                                                They also met the resident Croc “Terry”.        we are up to date with the latest skills in
                                                Graeme enjoyed playing with the dogs            order to give the best service possible to
David and Elizabeth looked at the rabbits,
                                                “Astro” and “Mini”.                             our clients. We can only do this through
and guinea pigs and Elizabeth spent time
                                                                                                our experience and our professional
holding and patting the babies. On the
way to the chook pens they saw horses and
cattle being washed and groomed for show.
                                                                                                We have recruited new staff since the
David, Peter and Elizabeth helped collect
                                                                                                last newsletter issue and we would like
eggs and package them into cartons for
                                                                                                to welcome them to Oakdale Services.
sale. The farm grows and produces a small
                                                                                                They are: Alexis and Mathew (Lodge);
amount of produce to cover some of the
                                                                                                Matthew (Burwood); Tim (Firthside) and
running costs of the farm.
                                                                                                Mahmoud (CLP)
                                                                                                Training completed since winter is:
Before saying goodbye they looked at
                                                                                                Administration of Medication; Infection
the garden which, with new veggies and
                                                                                                Control; Manutention; First Aid; AHRI
flowers popping up, is taking shape.
                                                                                                leadership conference; Palliative Care;
                                                “Ghan”- Graeme captures the moment
                                                                                                Food Safety; PART; Advanced Motivational
Ariel and Jess were very keen to ensure that
                                                                                                Interviewing; Epilepsy Management; and
everyone enjoyed the farm, and finished         On Sunday they boarded the train for the
                                                                                                Providing Support for Bereavement. Three
by escorting the group back to their car.       final leg of the trip to Adelaide. This was
                                                                                                of our staff attended the ASSID Conference
The residents took the opportunity to           very pleasant, good meals, good sleep,
                                                                                                in Melbourne at the end of November.
thank them for the tour of this wonderful       great views of the countryside, and lots
school farm.                                    of chats with other passengers and the
                                                                                                The Operations Manager and I attended
                                                friendly train staff. They disembarked at
                                                                                                the TCCI Education and Skills Summit
This has been the third visit to the farm and   Adelaide on Monday: toured around the
                                                                                                held in September and launched by the
every time they say that they will come         City; took a tram to Glenelg; had coffee at
                                                                                                Premier the Hon David Bartlett MHA. From
back. And they have!                            Starbucks and dinner at the Hogsbreath
                                                                                                2009, the way learning is delivered in
                                                Café. Next day they visited the huge IKEA
                                                                                                Tasmania is to change. The best elements
                                                furniture store, and then travelled to the
                                                    Oakdale Services Tasmania news & muse               Christmas 2008                            5

of our senior secondary colleges and            ‘Joy and sorrow are inseparable...together
TAFE Tasmania will be brought together          they come and when one sits alone with
to create three organisations. These            you...remember that the other is asleep
organisations will be: The Tasmanian            upon your bed’: Kahlil Gibran
Polytechnic for people who are seeking
employment or to go to university               Kathy Tauber
through practical learning and vocational       Human Resources Manager
courses; The Tasmanian Academy for
people who want to follow an academic
path to university; and Training Tasmania,
the organisation most relevant to us as
it works with us and our employees to
achieve quality skills outcomes such as
                                                A walk on the Silver                           “In tune with nature” – Peter, David, Patsy and Nick
Certificates in Disability Work.                Falls Track                                    Back on the track on their return, David
                                                                                               Gigney could be heard singing as he
                                                Near to Hobart is Wellington Park; a park
Oakdale’s management team recently                                                             walked along. Maybe he was getting in
                                                with many walking tracks. A group from
held a planning day which allowed us                                                           tune for ‘Choir of High Hopes’ practice later
                                                Oakdale Lodge with staff member Christine
to present suggestions for improvement                                                         that day!
                                                selected a suitable walk for a day out, the
and discuss ideas which may facilitate
                                                Silver Falls Track.
the smoother running of our service. Our                                                       Finally they sat in the little park below the
guest speaker for the day was Mary Dwyer                                                       track, and had a chat, where everyone
                                                They began their trek from Fern Tree on a
who is the CEO of Impact Solutions.                                                            agreed that they had thoroughly enjoyed
                                                perfect morning with plenty of sunshine.
Her company specialises in corporate                                                           themselves that day.
                                                Peter Dunkley, David Gigney, Patsy Henry
leadership development and cultural
                                                and Nickolas Ioannou enjoyed listening
change. Mary has a diverse background
                                                to the melodious calls of the birds; their
and gave an interesting talk.
                                                sounds could be heard echoing around the
                                                park. Beside them, and as far ahead as they
I am currently in the middle of the Climate
                                                could see, were lush green man ferns, and
                                                                                               From the CEO’s desk
Surveys which allows me to talk face to
                                                sheltering under the ferns were smaller
face with all OST staff. This is an important                                                  A relatively recent visitor to Oakdale Lodge
                                                native plants.
part of Human Resources as it is a time for                                                    was Mr David Roberts, Secretary of the
staff to talk about any concerns, requests                                                     Department of Health and Human Services.
                                                The walk took them up to the information
or ideas they may have.                                                                        The latest edition of ‘people matters’ the
                                                area, where they stood on the bridge and
                                                                                               DHHS newsletter has a half page photo
                                                watched the falls water flow by, also taking
That’s it from me for 2008! I hope you                                                         of David taken with Lindsay Appledorf
                                                time to look at photos of fauna and flora
have a joyous Christmas and a most                                                             (who always strives to achieve a photo
                                                and to greet others as they passed.
prosperous New Year.                                                                           with visitors) plus an article in which David
                                                                                               writes of his visit to the Lodge that he “....was
                                                                                               able to see first hand the organisations that
                        Music While You Munch 2009                                             our office for the Community Sector and
                                                                                               Human Services Reform Implementation
                Relax or dance to the music of Julie and Bob                                   Unit are currently engaging.” David’s visit
                                                                                               afforded the Board of OST the opportunity
                 in the pleasant grounds of Oakdale Lodge                                      to discuss with him the role that OST has in
                  from noon, Sunday 15th February 2009                                         the disability sector, particularly in regard
                                                                                               to Oakdale Lodge.

             We provide bbq lunch, coffee, tea or soft drinks                                  The important issues facing people
                                                                                               with a disability who are ageing and the
           You provide a donation of $15 and all other drinks.                                 organisations who are providing services
                                                                                               to this growing cohort also formed a
                                                                                               significant part of our discussions. It is my
        Last year was a sell-out and proved extremely popular.                                 understanding that the COAG discussions
                                                                                               that are underway (with the next meeting
       So contact Maureen on 62477915 or Gwen on 62441287                                      of Health Ministers scheduled for late
                      To secure your ticket now!                                               November) are actively considering the
                                                                                               differentiation of responsibility between
                                                                                               Commonwealth and the States for disability
  6            Oakdale Services Tasmania news & muse                Christmas 2008

and ageing will be based on 65 years of            The Tasmanian Industrial Commission
age. Oakdale Services has been at the              (TIC) recently endorsed an Industrial
forefront, at both the State and National          Agreement that will hopefully translate
level, in regard to ageing and disability.         into a wage increase for our employees
The concerns raised by Department of               and in an employee classification
Health and Ageing officers in Canberra             structure that will better reflect the roles
several years ago were largely to do               of our employees. Whilst we have been
with the need to be able to distinguish            advocating over the past two years for
between support needs that were clearly            a wage increase for our employees, the
related to ageing and those that related           Treasurer and the Health Minister both
to the level of disability. Of course at the       advised that any increase was an industrial
base of all this is the issue of ‘who pays for     matter. The ratification of the Agreement
what’ ... If it is age related then it should be   by the TIC has made it an industrial           “Like my hat” - Marylyn
the Federal Government but if it is related        matter; employers through NDS will be
                                                                                                  They had sweeps on all the races, which
to disability then it falls to the State. The      lobbying for the Tasmanian Government
                                                                                                  started at 10.20am. Elizabeth Gabriel was
COAG negotiations are of course complex,           to support the sector by allocating the
                                                                                                  very lucky winning first prize on two of the
an indisputable fact even when there are           funding necessary to implement the
                                                                                                  day’s races.
governments of the same persuasion at              wage increase. We shall see.....
both the Federal and State levels. It is also
                                                                                                  Naturally everyone had to have a hat and
a given that there is a desperate need to          We are about to say farewell to one of
                                                                                                  Lindsay Appledorf, David Gigney, Elizabeth
simplify the inflexibility of funding silos        Oakdale’s senior members of staff, Teresa
                                                                                                  Gabriel, Carol Cooper and Marylyn Geeves
that usually require compliance with               Dowding, who has been with OST for the
                                                                                                  looked the part with their decorated hats
rigid program parameters rather than the           past nine years. Teresa has been the Co-
                                                                                                  which were put together that morning.
flexibility to meet the needs of people; in this   ordinator of the CLP in recent times but
case people with a disability. The challenge       has now resigned to take up a position
                                                                                                  Everyone enjoyed a delicious Melbourne
facing our political and bureaucratic              interstate. I sincerely thank Teresa for all
                                                                                                  Cup luncheon and is already talking about
decision makers is to advance a simplified         she has contributed to Oakdale Services
                                                                                                  next year’s function.
system that works, but importantly keeps           and to the significant contribution she has
Australians with a disability at the forefront     made to enhance the lives of clients across
of their decisions.                                the organisation. Our best wishes go with
                                                   Teresa for her future.
There has been some political and media
attention lately given to the need for             In closing I wish to note the recent passing   Acorn action
business to engage with the education              of Jack Orr. During his 18 years as manager
system. Through National Disability                of Oakdale Lodge Jack was instrumental
Services (NDS) Oakdale Services has hosted         in developing the life opportunities of the
students from MacKillop College and                Lodge residents to a level that was in many
Clarence High providing an introduction to         ways beyond society’s expectation for that
the role of a disability support employee.         era. My sincere condolences go to Viv Orr
The NDS National Workforce Project has             and family.
focussed attention on the need to raise the
profile of the disability sector as a career       As we rapidly (it always seems to sneak
opportunity that offers a rewarding                up on us) approach the festive season
career, nationally recognised training             may I wish you all a very happy and
and skills that are fully portable both            safe Christmas and a prosperous (in the
nationally and internationally.                    broadest sense) 2009.

Two OST employees received a High                  Paul Byrne
Commendation in The Inaugural Alex                                                                “What did you say Santa?”
Tubb Young Worker Award. Tracey Percival
                                                                                                  The Acorns were in a festive mood when
who works at the Lodge and Nicola
                                                                                                  they entertained over sixty guests at
Wyatt who works at Nolan Crescent
                                                                                                  a fundraising morning tea at Oakdale
were both nominated for the award.
Both received a certificate in recognition
                                                   The Melbourne Cup with                         Lodge on Wednesday 26 November. The
of their outstanding commitment                    Ageing in Place                                group are working hard to raise funds
                                                                                                  to pay for the recent purchase of dining
to their professional development.
                                                   “Ageing in Place” did what every other         chairs for Oakdale Lodge. The trade table
Congratulations to both Tracey and Nicola
                                                   Aussie did on the first Tuesday in November.   with lots of Christmas goodies, table
on their achievements.
                                                   Yes – celebrated the Melbourne Cup.            decorations with a Christmas theme
                                                 Oakdale Services Tasmania news & muse              Christmas 2008               7
and a Christmas raffle all reminded us        clients designed fantastic posters together.    Staff Profile – Ian Hopkins
that Santa is not far away. Entertainment     Lunchtime arrived and time to replenish.
was provided by the Eastern Shore Glee        This was also a chance to have a chat, talk
Singers with a varied programme of            football and enjoy the day. Finally the
items. This was a very successful morning     time came to decorate the Gigney room,
enjoyed by all who attended.                  the venue for the big day. At the entrance
                                              stood Hawks and Cats helium balloons;
                                              overhead streamers extended right across
                                              the room; fantastic posters were placed
                                              in just the right positions so as to be seen;
                                              and the atmosphere of footy fever was
The AFL grand final                           alive with brown & yellow and blue & white
decorations                                   decorations all round. Pompoms sat on
                                              each person’s seat ready to cheer on their
There was much activity at the Lodge
                                              favourite team. The room looked fantastic.
the day prior to the AFL football grand
final. Clients and students visiting from
                                              Thank you to: students and other volunteers
the MacKillop College were busy making
                                              on the day; Margaret Roberts (Graeme
footy decorations.
                                              English’s sister) and Gianna Mason (staff
                                              member) for their time and creative ideas;
Students, clients, volunteers and staff
                                              and Rohan Naughton, Neville Fitzmaurice,
worked in groups to produce fantastic
                                              Rodney Howe and Graeme English who were
decorations. These included posters,
                                              true gentlemen, giving speeches thanking
banners, pompoms, plaited streamers, and
                                              everyone who was involved.
footballs with bootlaces. And of course who
could forget blowing up the Hawthorn and
                                                                                              I was born in Stoke-on-Trent, England
Geelong balloons (with a few pops and
                                                                                              in 1959 and emigrated to Brisbane
bangs here and there). Also students and
                                                                                              with my family in 1968. I was a typical
                                                                                              rebellious teenage boy who ran away
                                                                                              from home at 15, but instead of joining
                                                                                              the circus I joined the world of the
                                                                                              travelling showmen.

                                                                                              I look back on this as my further
                                                                                              education, ‘The University of Life’, and
                                                                                              for 5 years travelled all over Queensland
                                                                                              and New South Wales learning a lot
                                                                                              about people. It was during these years
                                                                                              that I also developed a love for driving
                                                                                              and a few other things that we won’t
                                                                                              go into here.

                                                                                              I next wanted a taste of the big smoke
                                                                                              so took myself off to Sydney where I
                                                                                              picked up a job at the Royal Doulton
                                                                                              factory making toilets. Ninety percent
                                                                                              of the workforce was recent immigrants
                                                                                              from Vietnam and Italy. They didn’t
                                                                                              need to know much English but boy did
                                                                                              they know how to work hard physically.
                                                                                              It gave me great respect for migrants
                                                                                              and the efforts they put in to starting
                                                                                              a new life.

                                                                                              After 6 months of toil and sweat I got
                                                                                              what I thought would be my dream job,
                                                                                              a bus driver with the public transport
                                                                                              authority in Sydney. Despite the traffic
“Where to hang them?” – Gary Lane                                                             hassles, the unrealistic timetables we
  8          Oakdale Services Tasmania news & muse            Christmas 2008

were expected to keep and the rude            program ‘Ageing in Place’.                     Disability system in Tasmania and also
passengers I really loved this job. There     I’ve also been on the Health & Safety          provide an additional 1,000 people with
was great camaraderie among the               Committee for about 12 years and have          services over that period.
drivers, we even had our own football         developed our relationships and success
(Soccer) team and played against other        with the community grant funds. In             I would not suggest that any of these
bus depots, I also played football here       recent years I have played an increased        expectations and hopes have yet been
in Hobart up until I was 40 and then          role in our expanding information              dashed, but the economic situation facing
coached children in what I firmly believe     technology system. My official title is        the world is not as rosy as it was twelve, or
is the greatest game in the world. After      now the ‘Co-ordinator of Projects and          even three, months ago.
a couple of years I was elected as the        Information Systems’ which sort of
bus depot’s Occupational Health and           means I do anything and everything;            Money alone will not resolve Federal/
Safety representative and did my best         and love it. After over 15 years working       State issues nor bring about reform in the
to improve the health and welfare of the      here you can’t help but feel part of one       Tasmanian sector; though clearly money will
drivers. This was a real challenge as not     big family which brings with it all the        be needed. But is often a knee-jerk reaction
many drivers stuck it out to retirement       obstacles as well as all the joys of any       of Governments under financial pressure
age due to heart disease and ulcer issues     other family.                                  to pull back from new projects which they
that were stress related.                                                                    perceive may cost them money. This is done
                                                                                             without fully exploring the possibilities of
I did not want to put myself in that                                                         more effective and targeted use of currently
position later in life. So, with my partner                                                  allocated funds or counting the future cost
Teresa, whom I had met whilst in Sydney, I                                                   of failing to act now.
left the big smoke and headed to Hobart.
                                              Editor’s Epilogue
I got a job as manager of a health food                                                      Money has been earmarked for reforming
shop and Teresa found a job in a group        I saw a ship a-sailing….I just hope the Tasmanian sector. Here I refer to funds
home. I soon realised that running a small    we haven’t missed the boat!         for the development of the mechanism
business can be harder than running                                                          for reform of services and putting these
up Mt Wellington backwards and my             As this issue is being prepared, the first     reforms in place.
exposure to the clients in the group          anniversary of the election of the Rudd
home where Teresa worked pointed out          Government has been noted.                     Money, or at least the source of that money,
a possible new direction.                                                                    is a key to the definition of State and
                                              After that election a large number of people   Commonwealth boundaries of responsibility
I started work for Oakdale back in 1993       in the Disability Sector, including some on
and haven’t looked back since. Working        the Board and management of Oakdale,           And finally there is that $50.8 million.
in the Lodge back in ‘those days’ was         expressed expectations of progress towards
far different to the situation today and      the resolution of many of the issues           Will all of those funds still be provided as
that is one of the interesting aspects        dogging Federal/state relationships in the     economic conditions tighten? Will critical
of the job. Despite the core of the job       provision of services and funding to people    issues continue to be addressed now.
remaining the same, the ways we do            with disabilities, especially as their needs
this has changed and of course been           changed with age.                              Or will these things be set aside as too
expanded on.                                                                                 costly? And is that therefore our ship I saw
                                              In Tasmania earlier this year the much         a-sailing?
I have a strong pride in working for an       anticipated KPMG Report in to Disability
organisation that puts client outcomes at     Services was released. This, it was hoped,     My thanks to all those involved in ‘news
the centre of its operations and underpins    would mark the start of major reforms in       & muse’ this year; from the staff who take
those outcomes with a philosophy of           this area.                                     the photos and submit the articles through
ensuring that the standards of service                                                       to the team at Savage Media for the
delivery are kept at a high level across      At a Federal level there appears to be         production work.
all areas.                                    progress on defining the boundaries of
                                              State and Commonwealth responsibilities        Wishing you all the compliments
Over the years clients at the Lodge           for those with a disability who are ageing.    of the season,
started to require support for ageing
needs and I was attracted to this             Jointly the State and Federal Governments      Geoff Harper
particular aspect of support work. I was      have announced an additional budget            Editor
subsequently offered the role of Aged         allocation of $50.8 million over the next
Care Co-ordinator for our national pilot      four years to fund the reform of the

                    Any opinions               Newsletter of Oakdale Services Tasmania           Email
                    expressed herein are       A.C.N.    055 028 562                             Website
                    not necessarily those      A.B.N.    72 867 597 283                          Editor :    Geoff Harper
                    of the management          PO Box 205 Rosny Park Tasmania 7018               Email:
                    or Board of OST.           Phone     6244 8846 Fax 62448024                  Graphics:   Savage Media

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