Support, Information, and Advocacy
- Carers’ Society Otago is an on-call service for over 550 family/whanau carers of anyone with a disability, chronic illness, or addiction throughout Otago.
- Two Community Workers visit carers in their homes or in our office and Carers’ Lounge at Community House, 301 Moray Pl, Dunedin. They provide a listening ear to carers, information on a range of topics, and support carers through advocacy work to help achieve outcomes indicated by the carers.
- Carers’ Society Otago manages a referral system to and from health, legal, social, government, and non-government agencies on behalf of carers.
- Carers’ Society Otago also provides information to relevant health, legal, and social agencies in printed form or by speaking to groups. The Community Workers network with a wide range of agencies to ensure that the information they provide to carers is current and relevant.
- Carers’ Society Otago has a Carers’ Lounge which is open from 8:30-5, five days a week, with coffee and tea making facilities. There is also a range of pamphlets and newsletters, and members may borrow books from The Jenny Clegg Library.
- Carers’ Society Otago liaises with other groups that support carers regionally, nationally, and worldwide, and advocates for carers locally and nationally.
- Carers’ Society Otago aims to promote a wider awareness of carer issues in order that carers are able to self-identify.
- To provide more opportunities to meet the needs of Carers in ways and times that are appropriate, such as a walking group, an art group, and a pamper evening.
- Carers’ Society Otago actively partners other organizations in projects that achieve positive outcomes for carers.
Carer Support Meetings
- Dunedin: One meeting is held per month on the second Thursday of every month at 1:30pm in the Alexander McMillan Room of Community House.
- South Otago: One meeting is held per alternate month at 6:30 pm in the Brian Dodds Room of Clutha Health First.
- Central Otago: Four meetings Per year on a Thursday at 2pm in Community House, Alexandra.
- North Otago: Four meeting per year on a Tuesday at 2 pm at Weston Community Church, Weston.
- Young Carers: One meeting is held per month on the 3rd Thursday of every month to support carers up to the age of 18.
- Walking Group: A walking group meets for coffee and a walk in Dunedin or Mosgiel area. Contact the Community Workers for details.
See our events calendar to find out what’s coming up.
Wheelchair Loan System
In response to the needs of carers, Carers’ Society Otago initiated a free wheelchair loan system for members so that carers have more freedom and can access more facilities with the person they care for. We currently have 14 wheelchairs on long term loan to carers.
Please contact us if you would like to borrow a wheelchair.
The Newsletter is published every 2 months and there is a Newsletter published monthly for Young Carers. See the latest newsletters.
- The Intimate Care Forums – in response to the need for a discussion around these issues, Carers’ Society partnered with Relationship Services, the Donald Beasley Institute, CCS, and Disability Services of the University of Otago to organise three forums in Dunedin for the receivers of care, family carers, and providers of care.
- NASC Project – Carers’ Society partnered with Disability Information Service to produce a valuable resource for carers and health professionals. The NASC booklet is an easy to read step by step description of Needs Assessment and Service Coordination across all areas of health and disability and acclaimed by carers and health professionals alike.
- Otago Health Expos – Carers’ Society is an active participant in Health Expos throughout Otago.
- Informal Family/Whanau Carers Training – Carers’ Society is an active participant in Otago-wide Carer Training Days organized by Presbyterian Support Otago.
- Student Training – Carers’ Society has participated in informing medical, nursing, social work, and pharmacy students about the caring role. From 2007 to the present Carers’ Society has participated actively in the curriculum of the University of Otago Medical School by giving a series of four lectures per year and organizing carers to be interviewed by second year medical students.
- Carers on Campus – Carers’ Society has a working relationship with the Otago Polytechnic in order to support any students who are family, friend or flatmate carers. We provide information and have established a referral system with Student Health.
- Carers New Zealand and the Carers’ Alliance – Carers’ Society Otago has a good working relationship with these organizations and regularly helps to inform projects they are developing such as the Carers’ Strategy recently launched by the Minister of Social Development.
- The celebration of 10 years of Carers’ Society Otago in August 2007.
- Carers’ Society Otago has developed research with 6th year Medical Students to investigate the impact of losing the caring role on Graduate Carers.
- The development of a Carers’ Society Otago website.