Authors: Community Support Work Service, Mental Health Rehabilitation, Auckland District Health Board
Event: 2010 TheMHS Awards
Type of resource: TheMHS Awards
Award state: NZ
Award level: Finalist
Award category: Specialist Service or Part of a Larger Service
Abstract: The Community Conservation Corp Trust created a mechanism for consumers to experience meaningful contribution and participation in their local community, targeting adults experiencing chronic patterns of relapse, dependency, socially isolative existence and minimal opportunity for community connection and employment. The unique approach blends conservation activities with individual expression, work readiness and leadership training. The program involves levels of assessment and evaluation to ensure effective mapping of consumer ability to designated tasks and identification of consumer supervisory capacity and leadership. The Trust developed a nursery utilising local wasteland and funds acquired from the sale of native trees ($5000 in 2009) are channelled into creative micro enterprise loans for program graduates and for expansion and diversification of employment projects. Participant commitment, courage, comradeship and emerging leadership has enabled the initiative to be independent, sustainable and successful. Outcome analysis evidences the tremendous benefits to recovery and independence whilst aiding reforestation of Regional Parks/Rivers. Description of Facility/Organisation: The CSW Service provides non-clinical, rehabilitative support to adults living independently in the community, whose quality of life has been severely compromised due to mental illness. The team of six assist approximately 150 consumers utilising ADHB Clinical MH Services yearly. The service covers a catchment area of (637km2) and receives $6200 funding annually toward quality initiatives. Strength Model principles underpin service delivery, promoting community integration, health, employment opportunities and restoration of ones self-esteem and independence. This is achieved through the provision of individualised support and facilitation of group activities: Healthy Lifestyles: Swimming, Badminton, Walking; Cultural Appreciation and Community Conservation Corps: Work Readiness Initiative. The establishment of a Charitable Trust created a legal employment framework to finance fixed term work contacts and small micro enterprise loans for program graduates. To secure sustainability and expansion of work projects: partnerships with Auckland Regional City/Regional Councils, Waikato Mighty River Project and WINZ were developed.
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