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Endeavour Foundation has today launched a feasibility study into the creation of a Respite and Recreation Service for children with a disability in Mackay.
Endeavour Foundation’s new North Queensland Business Development Manager Verena Coombe said there were limited weekend respite options for families of a child with a disability and the proposed new service could help achieve a more balanced lifestyle.
Ms Coombe said respite would allow parents and guardians the much-needed opportunity to spend quality time with other children in the family, or have some vital time to themselves, while offering a fun-filled recreational program for children with disabilities.
“Taking our children to sporting or cultural activities on the weekend is one of the many joys of parenting. We envisage that some families may use the service to bring some of this joy into their family – many for the first time,” Ms Coombe said.
“It is the simple things that we all take for granted: spending one-on-one time with each of our kids, time alone to see the doctor or dentist, or even watching a movie with our partner,” she said.
“Sometimes these things are too difficult for busy families to do, when much of their time is spent caring for a child with a disability. We hope this service will offer families an opportunity for more balance, and a happier family life for all members long-term.
“Of course, it’s not all about the carers! The children will be having fun with a highly anticipated program of activities,” Ms Coombe said.
Endeavour Foundation was established more than six decades ago and already provides daytime recreation and learning options for people with a disability throughout Queensland. Endeavour Foundation also provides supported accommodation, day services, in-home support and post-school education services to more than 50 people with a disability in Mackay.
That wealth of experience is vital in providing engaging, fun and often educational activities for people with a disability. Ms Coombe said the feasibility study would guide Endeavour Foundation’s decision-making around finer details of the service, including the cost charged to parents and guardians.
She hoped the service could be operational by the second half of this year. “I know that will be welcome news for parents and carers in Mackay,” she said.
People who want to express an interest in the Respite and Recreation Service can contact Ms Coombe by emailing NQrecreation@endeavour.com.au.