Funds needed for cen­tre’s sur­vival

Kapi-Mana News - - OUT & ABOUT - ADAM POULOPOULOS

A Kapiti health provider’s an­nual garage sale has taken on more im­por­tance with the loss of a govern­ment con­tract, leav­ing it $50,000 short of its op­er­at­ing costs for next year.

Te Ara Korowai, based in Rau­mati, north of Welling­ton, helped run the peer-led ad­vo­cacy ser­vice, pro­vid­ing sup­port for pa­tients in Kapiti and Porirua with men­tal health and ad­dic­tion prob­lems.

As well as los­ing the Cap­i­tal & Coast District Health Board con­tract, which was re­al­lo­cated af­ter it ex­pired, they have been turned down for a lot­tery grant.

Man­ager Lisa Archibald said she was not think­ing of clo­sure, and the cen­tre was seek­ing other fund­ing through grants and fundrais­ing ef­forts such as their garage sale.

‘‘We’ve had to change, re­think and re­struc­ture. These com­mu­nity NGOs are liv­ing on a wing and a prayer.’’

Te Ara Korowai’s open­ing hours will be cut to 9:30am-1pm, Mon­dayThurs­day.

One staff mem­ber’s hours have been re­duced from full­time to 10 hours a week, while an­other has been em­ployed by men­tal health provider Mind and Body.

Its ad­vo­cacy ser­vices will be chopped al­to­gether, con­cen­trat­ing in­stead on peer sup­port and cre­ative work­shops.

Archibald said staff wanted Te Ara Korowai to be ‘‘the am­bu­lance at the top of the cliff’’’.

‘‘We want to be pre­ven­ta­tive, and the health board is not good at that.

‘‘The peo­ple who are so­cially anx­ious, the clin­i­cian won’t help them, but if they aren’t helped the prob­lem can es­ca­late past the point where we can help them.’’

Vin­cents Art Work­shop and New­town Union Health Ser­vice ran the ser­vice along­side Te Ara Korowai.

Both have had a re­dun­dancy, but their open­ing hours have not been af­fected.

Mind and Body Con­sul­tants took over the three-year con­tract from July 1. They have mo­bile staff in Welling­ton, Porirua and Kapiti who will visit clients in their com­mu­ni­ties.

Gen­eral man­ager Gor­don Attwood said all staff had com­pleted train­ing, ex­ist­ing clients had been catered for and aware­ness-rais­ing for new clients was un­der way.

3DHB men­tal health and ad­dic­tion ser­vices plan­ning and fund­ing man­ager Arawhetu Gray said the DHBs looked to pro­vide ‘‘a more com­pre­hen­sive peer con­sumer ad­vo­cacy ser­vice to bet­ter meet our com­mu­ni­ties’ chang­ing needs’’.

The ser­vice’s fund­ing had risen to $305,010 a year, from $297,000, she said.

Ear­lier this year fig­ures from both Hutt Val­ley and Cap­i­tal & Coast DHBs re­vealed a change in fund­ing meth­ods, which saw both re­ceive less govern­ment money tar­geted for men­tal health.

The Te Ara Korowai build­ing in Rau­mati and in­set, man­ager Lisa Archibald.

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