What eventful start to 2011. While Australia and the international community have had their share of trials and tribulations, Real Community services have also experienced the ups and downs of everyday life.
The recent flooding of Brisbane impacted Real Community Services clients and staff. A famous saying I often hear is “through adversity comes opportunity”, and it has been throughout the flooding event and recovery efforts that I have had the privilege to see what the term community really means. It makes me proud to be a part in many people’s lives.
During the floods and for a period afterward we unfortunately faced many interruptions that adversely impacted on service delivery. Some of the interruptions included:
•Access to clients homes (difficult if not impossible for staff)
•Payroll accounting system •Information technology and telephone/ fax systems (Including Telstra phone and data network. •Central banking system (BOQ) •Building completely submerged. •Data backup and recovery failure •Import and export licensing program difficulties •Invoicing and reconciliation reports destroyed until data recovered •Payroll interruption for approximately 2 weeks
Despite all of this, we are moving forward with some real positive changes. Real Community Services has made some significant changes within all programs most notably the lifestyle support service. We have on board, two new staff members and re structured the way in which we provide services. Our Coordinators now each have their own afterhours contact so a more personalised response to client needs is provided after hours. We welcome our newest Coordinator to the lifestyle program, Maria Romero and also welcome back Jeanette Brown to the Lifestyle team as Service Manager.
With so much that has happened since the Brisbane floods it is easy to talk about the trials and tribulations that tested us all however, my intent is to ensure that the lessons we learnt throughout these times pave the way for better service delivery and more content clients and employees throughout 2011.
I wish to take this opportunity to thank all the dedicated and hardworking staff (both office and field) who continued to work particularly when situations required empathy and maturity.
Thanks also go to field staff who were patient in waiting for our accounts to process pays and continue to support their clients during that time.
I wish to also thank the accounts team who worked past midnight several times, in order to have pay-roll up and running as quickly as possible.
A big thank you also goes to the office staff who worked without a desk to sit at for approx. 9 weeks some of whom also lost all of their house possessions in the floods.
Trevor Green – Managing Director