Empowering Families, Transforming Community Essay

1226 words - 5 pages

The role of the family in the communityCommunities (recreation, employment etc.) are not the same as there were 20 or 30 years ago. The telephone, radio, TV, motorcar, and now the Internet has changed our world forever. Advances in medicine, technology, health and knowledge in various conditions has meant that people with high support needs are living longer and healthier today. This group is becoming larger each year. Of course these groups should have the same opportunities and rights as anyone else in the community. I am not advocating that we should lock them up or anything like that, however, we should provide the most appropriate care for the person as well as each community that the person is a part of, where the community has the knowledge, skills and resources to look after their needs. Whether a person is a part of the community of a service, or a number of communities, the person should have the same opportunities as others within society."The Western Australian population will increase by about 22 per cent to more than 2.55million people between 2008 and 2023 with most increase in the over 65 age group.The total number of person's who identify themselves as having a disability will increaseby about 38 per cent to around 632,600 by 2023." (DSC : Disability Future Directions, 03/2010 : P.37)We talk about the new generation and what they may do with their inherence.... What will families be like in the future?... How will they look after the needs of you and me in 30 or 40 years time?... Will communities have the knowledge, skills and resources to look after our needs?... What will be the role of a community in supporting people with high support needs?... What will be the role of Gov. policy and practice in supporting people with high support needs?... What will the current service organisations (ACTIV, TCCP etc.) be like in 30 or 40 years time?... Will we depend on these organisations in the future?Families have lost their knowledge, skills and resources in providing for the elderly. The socially accepted thing these days is to place them in a nursing home while we carry on with more important things. Other communities also have lost the knowledge, skills and resources to look after the needs of disadvantaged people and rely on organisations instead. Today we see a rising population, which is getting older, resources are being stretched, pressure in existing services is increasing etc. etc. I would not be surprised to see these current service organisations (ACTIV, TCCP etc.) become the institutions that Wolfensberger and others wrote about in the past (full circle). In fact I really think that it is already happening today and it's to late.Maybe it's the society that we live in, that we need to deinstitutionalise, rather that the disadvantaged people that we are trying to deinstitutionalise. We need to provide valued roles to families and communities in looking after the elderly, people with disability and other disadvantaged (poor...

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