Challenge launches local disability support services

Challenge Disability Services Chief Marketing & Sales Manager. Graham Dooley Challenge Children’s Services Regional Manager Western Foster Care, Lisa Anderson, State Manager Children’s Services Chris Brown, Challenge Western Area Manager Belle Moerkerk, State Manager Challenge Choices, Chris Buckman Challenge Choices NDIS consultant David Hinwood and Western Region Operating Manager Natasha Lee.Challenge Community Services launched its disability support and new foster care services at an open day on Tuesday.
Nanjing Night Net

Challenge has recently opened a Mudgee office in the former Salvation Army building in Perry Street.

State Manager Challenge Choices, Chris Buckman, said the Challenge would provide a range of services for disabled people from the Perry Street centre, including day time activities, social nights and training.

“We want to provide a choice for people with disabilities and different opportunities for people in Mudgee,” he said.

“We will provide training and transition to work programs, but also social facilities such as a pool table and air hockey tables.”

Mr Buckman said the centre will open daily, but the hours will vary according to the clients’ needs.

“We will be talking to clients about what they want and the hours they want to use the centre,” he said.

Challenge Community Services was established 58 years ago by a group of parents in in Tamworth and now provides services to people with disabilities through 60 sites.

State Manager Children’s Services Chris Brown said the group had recently moved into foster care services including respite services for carers and early intervention for families at risk.

“Our foster care services matches children with carers one-on-one and we also have residential care for children who do not meet the foster care model,” he said.

“The respite service helps carers who need a break.

“We also have early intervention services for families identified by Family Services, and we run preventative courses so that their children don’t come into care.”

Mr Brown said although Challenge was a relative newcomer to children’s services, it was the fastest growing organisation in the state in this field.

Visitors to the open day heard from foster carers who had worked with Challenge and also clients of the Challenge Choice disability support service.

Challenge Community Services also provides mental health support and Aboriginal services.

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