Ability Links Roll Out in New England North West

Social inclusion for the people with disability to roll out in the New England North West

On the 12th May 2014

Hon. John Ajaka, Minister for Ageing and Disability Services, announced Ability Links NSW, a major new initiative to build social inclusion for People with disability, their families and carers across NSW. In western and northern NSW, Ability Links will be delivered by North West Alliance, a consortium of non – government, community based organisations that have been working in local communities across the regions for over 40 years. “Ability Links will enable people   with disability to access all of the same resources and opportunities that people without disabilities access every day,” said Alan Brennan , CEO of Pathfinders , the organisation that will deliver Ability Links in the New England and North  West region.

“It’s about building inclusive, welcoming communities, and enabling people with disability to make their own plans for the future, making their own choices about the way they want to live their lives.”

Ability Links is the NSW approach to local area coordination for People with disability and is a critical component of the NSW transition to person – centred and individualised funding arrangements. Ability Links aims to improve the way people with disability, their families and carers in NSW are supported by placing them at the centre of decision making. The service will be delivered through coordinators known as ‘Linkers’, who will be a locally based first point of contact, and they will be available by phone, in person, online and out in mainstream community spaces. Linkers will work with people with disability and their families to build their own plans for the future, build on their strengths and skills, and develop networks in their own communities

to do what they want with their lives, outside the traditional disability service system.

Milena Morrow, Living Life

My Way Champion and Consumer Representative to North West Alliance has

managed her own funding and choices since the 1980s, has worked full

time for over 20 years, studied

several times, operated her own business, is married and owns her own home.

“By con

necting with Linkers, it will now give people the power and opportunity to choose the life they

want by pursuing their dreams, values, relationships, social participation, career paths and everything

life has to offer,” said Milena.