It has been a privilege to lead our Enhanced Lifestyles team over the past 12 months.
Our organisation has been through considerable change focused on creating a sustainable organisation that can better serve our customers, now and into the future.
This year, we have also navigated the challenges of the COVID-19 outbreak. I am proud of our team who have adapted and dealt with considerable change day to day in putting the supports in place around customers and Lifestyles Attendants who were affected.
There has been a renewal of the leadership team this year. Even in a tight recruitment market, we have attracted people with the right combination of “heart and smart” who live out the Enhanced Lifestyles vision of being member and customer led.
We are fortunate now to have one of the best management teams in the sector who are working productively together to support customers, lead our staff and improve every element of how we operate.
Throughout 2022, you have probably noticed the new branding designs and our different communications out to customers which has been led by new Marketing Manager Tom Rippon. Tom and his team with Jamie and Kirsten are supporting our improved communications with customers, community engagement opportunities (Lifestyle Lunches and Coffee Clubs) and other events like the upcoming Disability, Ageing and Lifestyle Expo.
We were excited to have Kathryn Broadbent join as General Manager, Operations in April, having come from leading one of the largest in-home care and community support organisations in SA under the aged care system. She is leading our Clinical, SIL, Service Delivery and Customer Relations Teams to improve how they operate and provide a better service to customers with well-trained Lifestyle Attendant staff.
Our Support Coordination business has grown considerably across the financial year under the leadership of Sarah Sayer. Whilst some customers are having Support Coordination removed from their NDIS plan, we are regularly having new customers come to us for supports, with now over 200 customers relying on us for this service. This team also includes our dynamic group of Psychosocial Recovery Coaches who are providing supports and services to individuals with mental health as part of their NDIS funding. We are excited to be building one of the larger teams of recovery coaches in the state.
We are well supported by a strong People and Culture team led by Andrew Baggaley. They have helped to build a positive and engaged workplace culture, ensure compliance with NDIS requirements, and recruit Lifestyle Attendants and other staff as needed.
It has been a priority for me to spend time in our regional offices, supporting their growth and development. We commenced moving office in Mount Gambier in February and held our official opening in June. Positioned right next door to the Local Area Coordinator (Mission Australia), the new office space will enable us to better support our customers and staff throughout the Limestone Coast region, and to become a drop-in centre for customers and staff alike.
Finding a more suitable office for us in Berri has been a priority over the past year, and after some delays, we purchased a new property. Work is underway to fit this building out based on our needs, and we will make further announcements in coming months when it opens.
We have lost a few key staff over the year including Corporate Services Manager Leigh Goodenough and Quality Manager Russell George. I’d like to thank each of them who left the organisation in a better place than when they started.
I’d like to thank our management team for their hard work and cooperation across the year. Each day, we wake up thinking about what we can do to improve Enhanced Lifestyles.
We have been ably supported by a number of external consultants who have brought additional skills to our management and enabled us to progress with key activities: Andrew Beitz & Kate Davis at Pitcher Partners (external accountant), Ben Farrell at BeeSquared (service delivery and recruitment process reviews), Anita Gover at Techability (software masterplan and project), Shayne Blakewell & team at EMA Consulting (HR advice), Christie Lum at Insync (customer & employee surveys), Nicole & Jason at Underwood Executive (key manager recruitment), Nick Lopez at Morris Forensic (forensic accounting review), Kaye Smith & Shannon Luker at EMA Legal (legal advisors), Andrew Tickle & team at BDO (auditor).
Lastly, a big thank you to our Board. I feel blessed to work with and learn from this amazing team who put our organisation and its customers first in all their decision making.
Chief Executive Officer