On Monday, 5 September 2016, Anglicare Australia hosted their national award ceremony in Darwin where Samaritans won a major award in the category of innovation for their Digital Life Stories project.
The Digital Life Project is an initiative delivered by the Samaritans Foundation in partnership with Family and Community Services in New South Wales.
The Project aims to deliver up to 250 video/multimedia digital stories for people residing in large residential centres across the state, including the Stockton and Kanangra Residential Centres.
“The purpose of the project is to allow people living with disabilities, to create their own digital introductory stories to capture important information about themselves. These short, three-minute introductory films aim to support their current and future care needs by capturing information about their interests and dreams for the future,” Project Manager, Eve McKenzie, said.
This project aims to record important information about the person with a disability in a universally accessible and user-friendly format, and to communicate this information during the transition process into new models of care.
“Digital story telling has the potential to provide a personalised bridge of communication between the person, support services and the wider community. It’s a great initiative not only for the people we support, but also the community at large,” Eve continued.
The judges thought that this was an innovative response to a new and real emerging issue. They commented that the project was not only innovative, but creative and respectful.
Judges of this year’s awards were Robert Morsillo from Telstra, Brian Babington, CEO of Families Australia, Frank Quinlan, CEO of Mental Health Australia and Marcelle Mogg, CEO of Catholic Social Services Australia.
Image | Nic Danks from Telstra (event sponsor) presenting Samaritans CEO Peter Gardiner the award
Samaritans is a regional welfare agency providing disability services, disability care, youth, family, mental health and community support in Newcastle and several regions of NSW.