The Acorn Branch is a powerful force for friendship and fundraising for people living with disability. It has 15 members, all of them 50+, many in their 70s and one who’s been involved since the second or third meeting.
This group makes life more comfortable for the people Li-Ve Tasmania supports. The Acorn Branch has donated items most of us take for granted, for example curtains, cupboards, a coat of paint and a garden setting. It has provided a defibrillator, a sensory garden, and items for the Lodge cats. It also contributed funds towards establishing the Zone.
The Acorn branch is at the heart of the Li-Ve Tasmania community. It’s the glue that holds participants, parents, staff, supporters and other stakeholders together; and draws in support from politicians and businesses. You can see it when you watch the participants invite staff to dance to YMCA at the Christmas party; when it’s the Li-Ve Tasmania CEO cooking the snags at a barbeque fundraiser; and when you ask the Acorn Branch members what it is that makes them special – and they blush and humbly deflect your question.
The Acorn Branch really began with the parents of people living with disability, in about 1971, and the group was formalised in the 80s.
In the early days, many people using Oakdale Lodge had no family, and their birthdays might have passed unacknowledged. However, the Acorn Branch members baked cakes, making sure each resident enjoyed a small celebration on their special day.
Birthday cakes led to barbeques, bus and ferry excursions, bingo – and a spectacular annual Christmas party.
Friendship led to fundraising via morning teas, pantomimes and even a craft fair.
Through its fundraising efforts, the Acorn Branch has now raised more than $150,000 to benefit the people Li-Ve Tasmania supports. The friendship it provides is priceless.
Want to know more about the Acorn Branch? Contact us.
We are proud to be working with Jenny Fuller and Pam Bretz to make the Li-Ve Fuller grant a reality.
Margie Fuller was a very much loved member of the Fuller family of Launceston but, on 9 October 2014, she died unexpectedly, leaving behind her two sisters, Jenny Fuller and Pam Bretz. In honour of their sister, Jenny and Pam teamed up with Li-Ve Tasmania to develop the Li-Ve Fuller grant.
Li-Ve Tasmania has undertaken administration, including financial management, and promotion – from developing a website and social media presence to sending advertising collateral to organisations in the sector.
People working in the disability field in Tasmania (in residential or day support, or any other capacity) can apply for a Li-Ve Fuller grant if they work in the Tasmanian disability sector and they want to learn something new, achieve a personal goal or master an existing skill. They just need to show how this will benefit people living with disability, both up front and in the longer term.
With funding and assistance from Palliative Care Tasmania, Better Access to Palliative Care, and LaTrobe University, we are changing the way people in the community and medical sectors traditionally approach people living with disability at the end of their lives and when they’re grieving.
The results of our research are already generating a systemic transformation, nationally, by providing a voice for people living with disability.
Until now, Tasmanians living with disability have not been asked about their thoughts and needs around death, and yet they have an enormous contribution to make to this conversation.
All people living with disability deserve to be valued and included when someone dies. And, when it comes to their own lives, they must have the same rights and opportunities as everyone else to voice their wishes and preferences, and even plan for their own final supports and life celebrations. That’s why we’re committed to reshaping the whole system.
Li-Ve Tasmania is committed to building a stronger, better-connected community, and to enhance the lives of people with a disability and those who support them.
Research shows siblings of children with disabilities often grow up in stressful situations. Many cope well, but most are at risk of developing lifelong emotional and behavioural problems.
So, in 2017 Li-Ve Tasmania formed a partnership with Tascare Society for Children and established a targeted support program for siblings of children with disability aged eight to 12 years, in Tasmania. Li-Ve Tasmania is extremely proud of this partnership and the opportunity to offer a comprehensive model of support to siblings of children with disability and their families.
Based on the clinically developed and evaluated program written by Siblings Australia, Sibworks is now available for siblings of children with disability in Tasmania.
Sibworks uses a peer support model to support siblings to:
· explore and understand the issues they share regarding their siblings’ disability
· consider and recognise the support networks available to them
· receive support to express and deal with their emotions
· learn how to make positive adjustments to their family situation.
FREE to participants, this program is coordinated by Tascare and is available to any young person between ages eight and 12 years with a sibling who has a disability (and who is a member of Tascare).