Our year in review
A snapshot of how we partnered with people to change lives for the better in 2020
Welcome from Chief Executive, Claire Robbs
I am pleased to share a snapshot of the fantastic work happening at Life Without Barriers. I share these stories with considerable gratitude to all the staff, foster carers and volunteers across our organisation who have been relentless in their actions to contribute to keeping people safe.
It is through leaning on our values that we have been able to remain committed to supporting over 23,000 people to live the life they want to live this year. Thank you for your continued belief in our work to partner with people to change lives for the better. We truly value your support.
Claire Robbs, Chief Executive
Our year by the numbers
Financial year 19/20
Supporting people with disability
This year we partnered with 5,972 people with disability to help them achieve their goals. We support people in specialist disability accommodation, in their own home and in the community.
As COVID-19 impacted our services, we had to be imaginative, responsive and courageous to continue to provide support that met the needs of our clients. Here is a snapshot of how we have supported people this year to live the life they choose.
Big moves: How Clive was supported to move interstate
It has been a big year for Clive, who was supported by Life Without Barriers to achieve his goal of moving to ...
Residents of supported accommodation design their own 'Party Room...
Choice and control were at the forefront as staff supported residents to turn an unused space in their share h...
Supporting children, families and foster carers
This year, along with our committed foster and kinship carers, we supported 4,573 children and young people through our out-of-home care program. While a challenging year, we strengthened our support through:
- Providing dedicated support to our foster carers throughout COVID-19 including contingency planning, virtual home visits and additional payments to carers.
- Launching the next phase of our child safety strategy We Put Children First: Understanding Harmful Sexual Behaviours to help our staff and carers respond with care and non-judgement.
- Chairing the Children in Care Collective, the interagency think tank that advocates to improve outcomes for children in out-of-home care.
Equine and Art Therapy for Foster Carers
We are bringing carers together for equine and art therapy and the results have been truly inspiring.
Walking together: Parent Partners give support in child protectio...
When the unimaginable happens, such as having a child removed and taken into care, Parent Partners are helping...
Partnering with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander People
We believe that reconciliation must live in the hearts and minds of all Australians. Our Reconciliation Action Plan acts as our guide when supporting Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander staff, clients and their families, to ensure our actions are culturally appropriate and respectful of their deep connection to country. This year we:
- Welcomed 138 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander staff to our organisation.
- Partnered with 84 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander organisations to ensure our work is culturally informed and respectful.
- Supported 10 Return to Country and cultural experiences for children and young people in foster care and people with disability. Several planned cultural experiences had to be postponed due to COVID-19.
- Participated in 53 NAIDOC community events and held our first virtual Reconciliation Week with online cultural events.
- Delivered Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Culture e-learning to 4,118 staff through our eLearning platform.
- Supported Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander businesses with a total spend of $337,000 in goods and services.
- Assisted over 100 people in the Kalgoorlie, Broome and the Dampier Peninsula regions with gaining their provisional driver’s license through our Aboriginal Driver Training Program.
Supporting Jake to drive his future
The Aboriginal Driver Training Program run by Life Without Barriers in WA has been upskilling people and chang...
Cultural connection – of the heart
Larissa and Mauro have been carers with Life Without Barriers for nearly five years and during that time they ...
Our COVID-19 response
As an essential service, we continued to provide services throughout the COVID-19 pandemic with two priorities at the centre of our work; continuity of care for the people we support and promoting and protecting the health and safety of our clients, staff, carers, children and families. We did this by:
- Establishing the COVID-19 Response Call Centre to provide staff, clients and their families with access to support and information about services.
- Continually adapting our services to reflect Government advice in consultation with the people we support and their families.
- Delivering personal protective equipment packs and care packs containing activities for clients to all disability homes and residential homes in our foster care program.
- Providing an additional two weeks paid leave to our direct care staff who were required to self-isolate.
- Using technology to connect foster carers, case managers, families and children in care and delivering online tours, classes and games to people we support with disability.
- Upskilling our direct care staff in correct use of PPE, advanced infection control and supporting people to stay safe and COVID free.
Social isolation doesn't mean boredom at Life Without Barriers ho...
At Life Without Barriers’ Shared and Supported Living houses social isolation hasn’t stopped the fun and games...
Supporting refugees and asylum seekers during a pandemic
With a 2020 theme of ‘Year of Welcome’ Refugee week is a time to embrace the best of what Australia can offer ...