Monthly update, June 2018 Posted by Posted by Loren Savage on 26 June 2018 Posted on: 26 June 2018

Posted by Loren Savage

Posted on: 26 June 2018


Sacha O'Dea's June update



Kia ora from wet and windy Wellington,

We have had a very busy month in the System Transformation team. We have been really focussed on recruitment so we have been interviewing for Directors and we have now advertised all of the roles for the two new teams.

We are working on developing business processes and over the next month we will be testing those with a group of disabled people and family members from Palmerston North.

We have been documenting how each of the interfaces will work between the new disability support system and the government agencies.

We have been doing a lot on how do we support providers to provide more flexible support options and provide disabled people with more decision making over their support.

We have had our second round of live streaming for disabled people, whānau and providers and we are working on a couple of Cabinet papers to seek agreement on the funding allocation processes and to address some regulatory issues about tax and eligibility to other government assistance.

Getting the right people for the two teams is a critical part of being able to deliver the transformed system in MidCentral. We want the system to give disabled people more flexible support options and decision making over their lives and support. So we are currently advertising for the Disabled People and Whānau Supporting Team for a Manager, 14 Connectors or Kaitūhono and a Network Builder. Applications close for the Manager role on the 2nd of July and for the other roles on the 6th of July.

The Connector/Kaitūhono role is an absolute critical role in the new transformed system. In this role you will walk alongside disabled people and whānau and assist them to think about what is it they want in their lives. What are they good at? What do they want to build on? So taking a real strengths based approach. Thinking about what kind of support they need to be able to achieve their goals and then to put things in place to make that happen.

In the prototype you will remember we are testing three types of Connectors. We are employing 18 of them across the region and we are going to have some who are contracted through non-governmental organisations. So for example, through a Whānau Ora provider so that we can have some Connectors in particular who come from specific cultural perspectives, that includes Deaf culture. We will also have a process for people to say, 'Look I have actually already got somebody in my life who would make a really good Connector,‘ and for you to be able to approach the Director or the Manager of the Disabled People and Whānau Supporting team and to be able to test whether this person has all the skills that are required and then we can pay them for their time as a Connector.

We are looking for people who:

  • will be able to build and maintain trusting relationships with a diverse range of disabled people and whānau

  • will be able to describe the Enabling Good Lives vision and principles and will be able to give examples of how they apply them in their practice

  • will be committed to implementing a disability rights approach

  • will have a good understanding of human rights and The Treaty of Waitangi and what that means for their work

  • and have extensive networks and understanding of their community and what is available in their community.

We are trying to build a team of Connectors that come from a diverse range of backgrounds because, as you know, the disability sector, disabled people and whānau are diverse. So we want people who come from a range of cultural backgrounds, living in different parts of the region so Dannevirke, Levin, Ōtaki, Feilding. We are wanting people who have experience working with different age groups, in the transformation there will be people from age zero to 80 or more. We want people who can work with parents of young children, young adults, children, people who are leaving school, leaving home and people who are ageing and going onto the next part of their lives. We also want people who can work with parents who are ageing and have adult disabled children. We also want people who have experience working with a range of impairment types and with experience, in particular, with one of the groups we are really worried about in the transformation, is to make sure there are people who have experience working with those who have very high and complex needs. So the sorts of people who may use alternative forms of communication and need a lot of support to enable positive behaviour.

We want to have people from a range of cultural backgrounds and there is more than 20 percent of the population are Māori and so we really want to have a range of Connectors who come from a Te Ao Māori perspective. We would also like to be able to have people who are Pacific peoples, can work with refugees and migrants and Deaf culture is really important. But probably the thing I would like to emphasise the most is that we really want Connectors who have lived experience so we would like there to be disabled people and people who are whānau members of disabled people who apply for these jobs.

These jobs, you can do them part time or full time and we will be role modelling best practice disability support ourselves. We will be able to put accommodation and supports in place to enable all of our staff, including those with disabilities, to be effective in their roles.

So my big plea to you this month is please use your networks to encourage anybody who you think who would make a good Connector to apply. Applications close on the 6th of July so that is midday on the 6th of July. And we really look forward to being able to choose from amazing people from diverse backgrounds for those roles. There will be, don’t want to scare anybody but there will be a role play and an interview but we will make it as easy as possible. For that as well, there will be disability support and accommodations can be put in place for anybody who needs that.

If you are looking for where to apply for these roles or for any more additional information please go to

Thanks very much. 

 All current vacancies can be viewed here 

Share and Like the page on facebook

Post your comment


No one has commented on this page yet.

RSS feed for comments on this page | RSS feed for all comments