What is a support network?
A support network includes the family, extended relatives, friends, community groups and carers of people living with disability. Support networks are crucial in the ongoing care and development of individuals receiving specialist therapy supports.
Why are support networks important?
Supports networks provide the essential daily care and sustenance enabling people with disabilities to thrive between their scheduled therapy sessions.
At LiveBig, we understand the importance of support networks, and work to support them in every way we can. This involves working with the individual but also their family and other carers to establish a holistic approach to health and wellbeing that will give the best quality of life.
Involving the entire family or support network in care
Using a combination of assessment, education and targeted activities, a LiveBig allied health therapist is able to guide the person with disability, their parents, carers or even an entire classroom, through structured sessions aimed at building everyone’s capacity.
LiveBig involve entire families or others in the support network to increase quality health outcomes. Participants in a therapy session are able to watch, learn, play and get feedback to support ongoing practice and repetition of specific skills.
What does this look like?
This might look like playing a game that practices physical co-ordination, creating a safe space for expression or even shifting perspectives and thinking differently about challenging situations.
The role of the therapist is ultimately to empower a participant and their network to build skills that lead to sustainable outcomes and eventually make their services redundant.
Making learning fun
A speech therapist, for example, can introduce a role play to a classroom that practices use of visual clues in communication. While targeting a participant who needs to increase their use of eye contact and gesture, the therapist is able to build the capacity and skills of everyone in the classroom and support effective and meaningful exchanges of information between the participant, their peers and teachers using a system based on universal teaching and learning.
An occupational therapist working to build a participant’s bilateral co-ordination might introduce a throwing and catching game with a sibling or parent that feels more like fun than a gross motor exercise.
Families and caregivers share success
By maintaining the focus of an activity at the group level, rather than the target participant, learning and effort is shared and supported. Families and care givers become an integral part of the process of teaching and learning, as well as sharing the success as goals are achieved.
Celebrating the small wins
Positive reinforcement is possibly the most critical part of the therapy journey. Celebrating the small wins is particularly important in creating momentum towards the achievement of a specific therapy goal. Therapy sessions are often great opportunities for recognising and celebrating a person’s progress.
LiveBig therapists can provide insights and suggestions on how to do this based on a tailored reward program designed around individual goals and interests. They can provide support networks with a range of positive feedback strategies including praise, immediate reward and non-immediate reward.
Marcella Romero is the Founder and CEO of the Arriba Group. The company believes that every individual deserves a better future. And so, it provides quality-allied health and employment services directly to individuals with or without disability, in addition to individuals belonging to various levels of government and private corporations.
Marcella is a strategic, passionate and innovative leader who expanded a one-woman home office to three successful enterprises — Rehab Management, AimBig Employment and LiveBig — with over 350 diverse employees across 98 offices, all working to deliver quality services to its clients. In 2019, AimBig Employment was listed as one of the AFR BOSS Most Innovative Companies in Australia.
Marcella holds an undergraduate and Master’s in Health Science in Occupational Therapy from the University of Sydney. She is an award-winning chief executive with over 20 years’ experience working in Allied Health Services across workplace rehabilitation, disability employment and disability therapy services (under the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS)).
She won the Comcare WHS (Innovation) Award in 2014. Marcella was also the finalist in the 2017 Telstra NSW Entrepreneur Award, Telstra 2019 NSW Business Women’s Awards (Medium and Large Business) and 2017 Health Executive of the Year Awards (CEO Magazine ANZ). Recently, she was a finalist in the Australian Growth Company Awards for Women in Leadership (2019) and the 2019 CEO Executive of the Year Award (CEO Magazine ANZ).
Craig is a seasoned business leader, director and group advisory board member. With over 18 years’ experience in workplace rehabilitation, disability, employment services and work health, safety & wellbeing. Craig has extensive knowledge across strategic business growth, risk management, talent management and innovation. With a key role in diligence practices and strategic advice for planning, finance, growth and innovation, Craig focuses on helping people to live their best lives. He collaborates with senior leaders to foster an organisation with a social, diverse and community-driven approach.
Serhat has a proven track record across professional services industries. With over 20 years’ executive experience, Serhat has overseen operational excellence across many sectors, including IT, workplace rehabilitation and disability services. As our group COO, Serhat has extensive financial, IT, operational and commercial management experience and invokes a culture of positive customer experience.
A CFO of the year Finalist with over 20 years’ industry experience, Glenn oversees Rehab Management’s financial services team, ensuring a streamlined approach to financial and corporate affairs for internal and external clients. Glenn’s highly focused, energetic style is characterised by in-depth allied and corporate health knowledge and strong leadership skills to inspire his team and continually drive the business’ financial success.
James is an experienced information technology professional with over 20 years’ experience, over ten of these in senior leadership roles. He has worked in the government, corporate and not-for-profit sectors and in a wide range of industries including communications, broadcast, aged care, disability, community services and healthcare. During his career, James has led significant business transformation projects, managing the integration of all aspects of information technology for major mergers and acquisitions. When developing and implementing IT strategies, James ensures that they are in alignment with the overall strategy and goals of the business. He is a great believer in enhancing customer satisfaction through customer-centric design.
Louise is an experienced marketer with a deep customer-centric approach, with over 20 years’ experience in services marketing. She started her life in advertising working across blue-chip clients. Moving client-side, she has held senior marketing roles at BPAY, BT Financial Group, Austrade and the Benevolent Society. She is a passionate believer in the power of brand to shape the destiny of companies.
As multi-award winner for disability employment and strategic project management, Terry has over 10 years’ industry experience across government and non-for-profit sectors.
As AimBig’s General Manager, Terry oversees multiple organisation divisions, supporting the executive team in driving our strategic vision and customer-focused operations. Terry applies a holistic approach to people and customer operations with a strong commitment to corporate social responsibility and social investment.
As Rehab Management’s General Manager, Sam oversees multiple organisation divisions, supporting the executive team in driving our strategic vision and client-focused operations. Sam applies a holistic approach to business management, staff training, recruitment and induction.
His duties include overseeing our organisation’s operations nation-wide, managing service delivery quality and growth, and promoting our strong internal culture.
Lyudmyla has over 20 years’ experience in the disability sector, with a long track record in senior roles. She has led large teams in disability services through the transition from block funding to individual funding under NDIS and has supported the implementation of quality and sustainable service models in therapy, group and individual supports. Lyudmyla has tertiary qualifications in Business Management, Inclusive Education and Disability Studies, and is a graduate and member of the Australian Applied Management Colloquium.
Nicole Caltagirone is a results-oriented, performance-driven leader with over 11 years’ experience in Human Resource Management. With a strong background in culture transformation in fast-paced organisations, Nicole strives to continuously cultivate and maintain an engaged and capable workforce while recognising the need to personalise the employee experience. A creative thinker, Nicole finds ways to implement innovative human resources initiatives to effectively balance the needs of employees with the goals of the organisation, resulting in happy employees and a boost in organisational growth and profits. A strategic business partner, she provides the guidance and expertise required to support and deliver organisational change while championing corporate values, vision and mission of the leadership team.
Christina has 18 years’ national health industry experience, having held various managerial roles that include quality assurance and program implementation. Christina is a senior leader focused on high-quality outcomes, innovative services and improved stakeholder engagement.