Plumtree is more than a service provider. Our parent-led Now & Next community supports families and advocates change in disability.
Plumtree has been finding new ways to support families who have a child with a disability or developmental delay since 2015. Our Now & Next program helps parents develop goal-setting skills, achieve positive outcomes, and educate and empower other families. A first of its kind in Australia and developed in-house, the evidence-based program won the 2017 ECIA NSW/ACT Excellence Award and was a finalist in the NSW Disability Innovation Awards.
The peer network model has long been perceived by the disability sector as the way of the future, and we’re proud of Now & Next’s success. Now running in Australia, New Zealand and Canada, the program’s alumni total 405 members as of June 2019. At Plumtree, Now & Next is also a pathway for parent employment as peer workers.
Our Peer Workers are being heard at disability conferences overseas such as IIDL Sweden. When the 2019 International Society on Early Intervention Conference was held in Sydney for the first time, we were proud to have Stacey Touma invited to speak about Now & Next and her experience in family-centred early intervention. You can read more about Stacey’s experience
Both organisations are founded on research evidence and the theory and practice of early intervention. They champion peers to pioneer change and advocate an outlook embraced by contemporary society: autism and disability are not deficits. Parents, families and children who have a disability should be respected, accepted and empowered. Activities and resources are being planned for the near future.
Learn more about Plumtree community at www.plumtree.org.au