Muscular Dystrophy Queensland began to work with clients in regional communities to develop ‘Community Networks’ in response to feedback received in our 2011 Client Survey.
Each network has group leaders, who are clients (or their family members) who drive the community network group so that it becomes sustainable at meeting the needs and aspirations of the members of the group. The structure of each Community Network is determined by the participants however, typically groups gather bi-monthly or quarterly and have their own Christmas gathering. Groups could also have a number of elements, including a social group that might want to go out to sport/rec or leisure activities together – literally it can be any shape that works!
Muscular Dystrophy Queensland is responsible for ‘kick starting’ Community Network groups and will work alongside the group leaders through a case worker in the respective region and will continue to have regular communication with them. MD Qld also assists, within its capacity, with covering the transport cost of clients and their families getting to and from the network gathering where financial assistance is required. We can also assist with sending out invitations to network gatherings and covering the cost of postage and printing.
By sending out invitations to all the people in the area it really opens up the opportunity for anyone who hasn’t contacted MD Qld to make the choice of whether they wish to attend the Network gathering in their region.
Community Network Gatherings can be attended by the Client Services Manager and/or the designated Case Worker in the region initially. It really is about the group driving it for themselves and being supported by their Case Worker to provide them with the resources to keep the group sustainable.
Community Networks have now been established in Darling Downs, Gold Coast, Moreton Bay, Bundaberg (Coral Coast), Cairns, Townsville, Ipswich and Sunshine Coast.
If you live in an area surrounding these regions and would like to join your local network, or if you are interested in working Muscular Dystrophy Queensland to establish a network in another region please get in touch with us.