I haven’t posted a lot since the climbing competition. Once we got home and got ADNZ Ben sorted out, I crashed and have been having a few health issues.

ADNZ Ben is back to his normal goofy self after taking some time off to recover. He really did give us one hell of a scare this time. While ADNZ Ben has been on “medical leave” I’ve learnt a couple of things. He makes living out in the community so much easier with just simple things like dropping my keys, sticks etc and getting out of chairs etc. I also found myself being way, way early for things. I’m usually pretty prompt at turning up on time but without having to get ADNZ Ben’s stuff organised and not being stopped by random strangers about the dog I had time to spare! He’s back on the job now and I’m having to factor those times in again. I want to say a huge thank you to Cahills Animal Hospital for the excellent care of ADNZ Ben at what was an incredibly stressful time.

5th of September saw the first Regional Leadership Group for Enabling Good Lives. We spent the day sharing who we are as individuals and getting to know each other. Although building mutual trust is important as we will be dealing with some pretty in depth and potentially controversial topics I was a little frustrated by not getting into the nitty-gritty of it all. I was slightly surprised at just how many officials in attendance, even though they don’t have “voting rights” as such.

I’m in two minds about them being there in such numbers; they’re either there to actually engage or to put in some roadblocks and time will tell which way that goes. I’m looking forward to the October meeting to start getting into the real mahi. I know people are resistant to this transformation, change is hard and no doubt, no matter how this process goes we’re going to take flack. The way I see it for once “nothing for us without us” is being used within the process and we need more people from the community to step up and get involved in the online working groups so we can do our best to represent the community.

I got out and voted today. I’m not going to say who to vote for, but please look at the policies and make a decision for the good of all New Zealanders and not just the privileged. Currently I look at what is happening in our communities and it breaks my heart that so many people are not getting the support that they need across many issues. So do your bit and take the opportunity to have your say. If you don’t have your say because “my vote doesn’t matter” or “we’re screwed any way” you are reinforcing these mindsets. Voting doesn’t take long and lots of “single” votes all add up when they are counted.

Take care & stay safe out there!

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