Vital Information From Vaka Tautua Christchurch

As a result of a working partnership with CCS Disability Action Mrs Rauiti Pitomaki (Cook Islands) was able to get a mobility parking permit.  

Prior to meeting our DIAS Coordinator and Vaka Tautua Christchurch Team Leader; Kaiongo Tupou said she had no knowledge of these permits and was finding it difficult to get to her hospital appointments and do her weekly shopping. Mrs Rauitiis is now delighted to have access to mobility parking as this will greatly impact on her ability to attend appointments and be more independent.

We are pleased our DIAS services can provide our Pacific community assistance like mobility parking, especially when language, cultural and transport barriers can sometimes mean people miss out on services to help them be more mobile and self-reliant. 

For further information about Vaka Tautua see the website:

Disability Connect Making a Difference

Hi, I am Lalita. I have a 17 year old son with Downs Syndrome. Viraj got his residency a year ago and the process for his benefits application started. 
I had no clue how to go about it and was struggling to get information. I went to WINZ, they got his benefit organized. However, I was still having difficulties with the carer support, home-care, respite….. I had no idea what to do next.
That’s when I started talking to Gabi Zundorf. I knew Gabi because I was one of the caregivers for her son Joshua. Gabi was the right person I chose to speak to. Gabi was engaged as Information Advisor at Disability Connect and she was happy to give me all the information I needed. Not only that, she got me to subscribe to the mailing list of Disability Connect and then I started receiving invitations to various seminars, workshops organized by them. I attended a number of those (that I thought I needed to attend) and they were very informative and interesting. 
I also got to meet other members of the organization who answered my personal queries or directed me to the right people. I got to meet other parents like me, trying to get help fot their young person. We came together and formed a support group which has gone a long way to bring some relief to us.
It was the best thing that could happen to my son Viraj, that Gabi supported us at the right time and helped with smooth running of his life. She informed me about Taikura Trust’s needs assessment procedure, Viraj now has IF (also known to us only due to Gabi), home care support, respite care and carer support.
So, once again, thank you Gabi and Disability Connect.


A letter from Helen

Thank you, thank you, thank you!
I was overwhelmed on Saturday when you offered to help by delivering the little green Aidapt cycle to me when I was reluctant to go out in the dreadful weather we were experiencing, cross that Bridge and travel to Royal Oak.  It’s rare in today’s world to have people who care about others and will go out of their way to help them. I was blown away by your help as it was something I used to do when I worked in previous jobs where customers needed some extra support in getting product to them quicker than the post.
I had phoned the office prior to this to ask advice about your equipment and was pleasantly surprised at the help given, enhancing the decision-making process to purchase this little machine.  Well done to you and your organisation, as it’s obvious yours and their work ethics are brilliant! 
I wholeheartedly support Independent Living Services and thank you for providing equipment and advice to those in our community who are not as able-bodied as we would like to be. You are a valued part of NZ community and much needed now the baby-boomers are about to hit the ‘extra care’ of retirement and all that this entails on our aging bodies! JKeep up the great work you are doing for Kiwis and thank you again.
Warm regards

Anne - ILS Auckland

The beauty of synchronicity. 

On Saturday 8th August 2015, Anne phoned the ILS Royal Oak store just prior to closing time enquiring about the availability of a petite lift chair. She spoke with Julianne who confirmed one was available. Anne was keen to collect the chair that day, as her Mum was returning from hospital and the lift chair would be a welcome relief for a comfortable sleep.   Julianne and Anne discussed the options for pick-up. Julianne was happy to wait behind after closing and Anne made a hasty phone call to her son to call in to the Royal Oak Store with a trailer to collect the chair, within the hour.  The petite lift chair was duly collected and loaded into the 4-Wheel Drive vehicle and driven to its new home with Nana. 

On Tuesday 11th August, 2015, Anne came into the ILS Royal Oak store with a beautiful Peace Lily plant as a thank you to Julianne.

Michael - Auckland

We hear of many positive outcomes for people accessing our Information services and we will feature some of these in this blog. We start with how ILS in Auckland assisted 'Michael'...

Michael would like to acknowledge the ongoing information support he has received from ILS over recent years, with himself receiving a successful conclusion to a Lottery application for a Mobility Van Grant.  ILS assisted him to lodge and work through with his vehicle assessor and community OT.  More recently ILS helped him to apply for additional community support funds through the CCS Jubilee Trust and with communicating his needs to his mobility & seating assessor.

Michael's physical disability makes communication difficult and he is often misunderstood, and he feels that he can come in to ILS anytime and a member of the information team will always assist where they can to ensure that his enquiry is being heard.