In many ways 2017/18 was a year of great change for the WA Deaf Society.I started as the new CEO in August and I want to thank Rebecca Adam for the wonderful work she did in her time as CEO.
This past year we have also seen the NDIS rollout across WA confirmed in December which has dramatically changed the way we are funded and deliver the services.
We were successful in a LotteryWest grant for new computers to replace our old ones and we continued the work on our strategic planning journey which began back in 2016 which I will talk more about at the end.
How did we achieve all these things? By focusing on 6 areas:
- Physical assets
Workforce – Our Team grew in lots of ways with new staff to new babies joining the WA Deaf family, and our amazing volunteers helped us collect donations, answer phones and even helped organise an Easter Picnic at short notice.
Leadership – The focus on leadership has seen the Speaker of the WA Parliament welcome the WA Deaf community in Auslan and recognise the UN International Day of Sign Languages. Our Patron become the first Governor in Australia to give a message in Auslan. I attended the WFD congress in Budapest to present a paper to the global deaf community (and literally put Perth on the map when I told them how far I had flown to get there) and our staff have presented to the Commonwealth Senate, the NDIA and to the WA Police Force.
Structure – We have made changes in our organisational structure to reflect what we aspire to become – a sustainable and contemporary organisation for Deaf and Hard of Hearing people in WA for the next 100 years.
Systems – We were successful in a LotteryWest grant for $152,170 to upgrade our new computer hardware and systems and I am excited to see this roll out over the next few months.
Physical Assets – You all know the risks and danger associated with our old office in East Perth and the high cost of the DCC (over $100,000 a year) was explained to the community at various forums and events over the past two years and can I thank Vanessa Alford, who did an amazing job facilitating the forum about the DCC. Her contribution to the board was extremely valued.
Of course in this new financial year we moved offices and WADRA are now located at the Lake Monger Recreation Club just 800meters away from here.
Brand – As our Chair has mentioned our strategic planning journey began back in 2016 and thanks to the feedback from so many of you in our community who gave of your time and ideas we now have a new brand and strategy which I am I am very excited to reveal to you today.
Back in 1921 when those 12 deaf people gather near here at 47 Railway Parade, Mt Lawley at the home of Mr R.B. Jeffery’s parents and formed the WA Deaf Society they had a vision, today nearly 100 years on I want to share with you the purpose and values that you our community have told us you want us to be going forward and our new brand
Our Purpose is “To Foster a community of communication without limits.”
We are guided by our Values of Community, Access, Inclusion and Progress
And our mantra always has and always will be “Access for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing at the centre of everything we do.”
We deliver on this strategy through our various service arms including;
- Access Interpreting for Auslan interpreting,
- Access MyLife for Community Services,
- Access MyTraining for Auslan courses and
- Access MyNDIS for information and referral services.
You will also see the new brand Access MyCare which is the new Aged Care Service we are working towards for 2020.
You the community told us it was important to keep the WA Deaf in our brand but it needed to be more inclusive for the wider deaf and hard of hearing community here in WA so after a long process of 4 workshops with the deaf community and a online survey, a cross section community members including deaf seniors and youth from Belmont City College were shown design concepts and after some discussion the new brand was decided upon.
The brand AccessPlus WA Deaf incorporates our mantra of “Access for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing at the centre of everything we do.”, plus so much more.
As we all know the hand is an essential part of communication in sign language
The design of palm of the hand represents inclusion of the deaf, hard of hearing and other groups all coming together to foster a community of communication without limits.
Each of the fingers represents a colour that aligns with our services.
We have kept the colour blue from our old logo but made it more modern to match the new design.
Welcome to AccessPlus WA Deaf.