Look through the information on this page, see what I have learnt over the years I have been studying, educating people and lobbying to get the services and facilities I am wanting to realise through this $30,000 Good Stuff grant.
It just so happens my field of expertise is stress disorders, psychology, poverty, politics, occupational therapy, law, sociology, suicide, I have been involved for almost 2 decades. I also have lived experience of being a terrorised vulnerable disabled women in our society interacting with ‘services’. I know where the problems are and how to solve 80% of them.
There is nobody as passionate as me about getting real effective support/services/resources to those who need it, most appreciate it and whose lives would be most positively impacted by it.
My ideas are based on professional health and rehabilitation models, along with disability and other constitutional laws in New Zealand and internationally.
Give me a chance, give this a chance, the extent of my knowledge and experience should be harnessed and used to bring change to the mental health sector – change years of governments and inquiries says need to happen but up until now there was no co-ordinated plan about how this was going to be achieved. What I am proposing is that plan.
It is important to recognise these facilities are a workplace, health care and training environment all rolled into one, with the support of volunteers – like people from the Mens Shed. They are not a drop in centre, everybody must have a professional rehabilitation plan and pathway to employment. This would not be appropriate for people with intellectual disabilities (or others who currently have services). ACC would be a significant funder of services, especially in the area of mental injury, through the regional mental health facilities (a glaring gap in services will be closed). ACC have recently announced they intend to drop investing in fossil fuels, so now would be the time for them to invest in housing and service infrastructure for their mentally and physically injured claimants.
I can picture what they would look like, how they would operate, I can see it in my minds eye in operation, functioning really well. I can imagine myself walking through the large building, with two houses in varying states of completion being worked on by a large team of people , clients and their support people.
Producing a house every fortnight, as teams of people from our working population also pitch in to get these facilities up and running to address the suicide and social issues that plague our society in 2020.
To imagine this throughout New Zealand, changing lives and statistics, taking Wairarapa and West Coast to the regions with the least amount of suicides, rather than the most. To New Zealand leading the world in this field, creating a more inclusive, equal and peaceful society.
I am so excited and so scared at the same time, after all these years to see something tangible and medically/occupational therapy based would be………………………… AMAZING.
These facilities would be set up for mental health clients (Regional Mental Health Facilities) and a separate one for people with other disabilities/injuries/illnesses (Local Rehabilitation Centres).
Attached to the house building operation, which would be high tech and even ai support for people with disabilities to build the homes. I envisage new equipment being designed in this area.
Houses would be designed with people with disabilities in mind and those chosen to receive the homes would get input into their design, as any new homeowner would. People would do rent to own arrangements with the government for the homes and perhaps when that person has finished with it, it is offered back to the government for another person with a disability.
There would be a large area for a gymnasium with instructors and physios who understood disability. All equipment would be hooked up to dynamo’s to contribute to the energy needs of the facilities.
There would be offices and meeting rooms for clients and health providers. Rooms for teaching. These facilities would also be for teaching, for Occupational Therapists, physiotherapists, Psychiatric Nurses (I don’t agree with position of Mental Health Support Worker), and skills as required for building, upcycling and food production, It was bought to my attention recently that older, more experienced people cannot afford to get formal training and remain as Mental Health Support Workers, while younger people get superiority over them – and they cannot handle it and often abuse it (I have experienced this). We used to train people on the job in mental health and that needs to happen again. These rehabilitation centres offer that opportunity.
Recently I sat on the main road through my small town and say how many cars travelled the hour or more drive to Wellington to work. All that fuel, all that pollution, all that waste of time. My idea also provides opportunities to work for people who want to get into health provision. As well as the output from clients building infrastructure (housing) and recycling/upcycling refuse from industry. People with stress disorders are often very creative, this needs to be harnessed and innovative useful ways of processing those raw materials we have to work with. We could produce items for export.
Perhaps a co-operative could be set up outside the framework of the provision of rehabilitation services, so the people participating in the centre would rightly profit from their labour and endeavours. With the support they needed and were entitled to.
There would be a large area for upcycling and recycling clothing, along with a woodwork/metal work room for repair and upcycling of furniture and industrial waste we can find uses for (eg from the building industry, carpet offcuts etc).
There would be a commercial kitchen to process our over-supply of foods, preserves, drying operation, etc. Also for rehabilitation and teaching.
There would be a large market garden attached to each facility to provide rehabilitation, education and food, etc for clients, staff and the community.
It is important meaningful work addresses those most basic drives in all of us to contribute and be part of a community.
Private contractors would be bought in to work with clients, health providers would use the facilities free of charge.
This would be an amazing resources for so many communities across Aotearoa New Zealand. Something the community can be proud of in the future, when the Covid response money has been spent.