As mentioned in previous posts, in Celebrating 30 years as a organisation we decided to put together a magazine that honoured both our history and our customers. If you haven't had a chance to view the magazine, then click on the magazine image here:
Country Home Services had its beginnings as a project known as Country Home Advocacy Project (CHAP). Supported and funded by the Commonwealth Government, it was established as a trial to test the community options approach within country communities of South Australia. The service was designed to focus on the individual needs of frail elderly people and younger people with disabilities who were at risk of premature entry into care facilities.
Led by Garham Guest, the new service delivery model drove a partnership between Hospital advocates and direct care service providers. Advocates were based in Gawler (Penny Warnecke), Balaklava (Pam Uppill), Clare (Cathy Neligan) and Angaston (Sandra Obst) Hospitals and brokered services to those looking to remain living independently in their home.
As the ‘trial’ phase drew to an end, it was clear that the services brokered by CHAP were needed by the community. In August 1990, Peter Sparrow was appointed as Chief Executive Officer and this commenced the next phase of business development. A Board of Management was established as elected at the first Annual General Meeting held in 1992. The Board consisted of customers and representatives from health organizations. At this time, Commonwealth and State Funding was secured to support ongoing operations. The first CHAP office was opened in 1997 in the town of Balaklava, and a new logo of a little house was designed.
Pam Uphill took over as Chief Executive Office in Mary 1998. CHAP received additional funding and in 1999, opened offices in Nuriootpa (Krieg Cottage) and Clare (Harmer House).
Growth continued and in 2000, CHAP opened an office in Maitland with a vision of providing services to those most isolated across the Yorke Peninsula. Services commenced in the Light region, reaching across to Eudunda.
During this period, CHAP established men’s groups and a carers respite cottage in Clare.
Gerda Roder-Allen became Chief Executive Officer in 2003 and in 2004, CHAP celebrated it’s 15th Birthday. Service delivery had grown to incorporate all communities in the Yorke Peninsula, Mallala, Clare and Gilbert Valleys, Wakefield, Goyder, Gawler and the Barossa Valley Council areas. At this time, 974 people received support including Veterans.
Sue Neilson, respected across the region as a leader in aged care thinking, acted in the role of Chief Executive Officer until the appointment of Mick Brock. During this period, additional funding was secured to expand service delivery to the Gawler Belt and areas in the Lower North and Wakefield Plans. An office in Gawler was established to support this expansion and a new logo was introduced for CHAP in February 2009.
Erik Moen joined CHAP in January 2011 and brought with him a wealth of knowledge gained from 30 plus years of management experience in the Health Sector. As Chief Executive Officer, he sought to streamline services with a vision of improving efficiency and placing more funds in the community for community services. Five offices turned into three, Nuriootpa, Clare and Maitland and new IT systems were introduced to prepare for the upcoming sector reform.
In October 2013, CHAP changed its trading name to Country Home Services. This occurred as the organization no longer viewed itself as a project. Additionally, we wanted to demonstrate our commitment to country people and country life. The organization’s commitment to employee wellness was rewarded as Country Home Services became the recipient of the Aged Care Services SA & NT Inaugural wellness Award.
Towards the close of 2015, Erik retired and Craig Stanbridge became Chief Executive Officer. Craig has overseen a period of significant national reform of the aged care sector. This reform has culminated in the establishment of the Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety which we all hope will move our sector to a place where age does not define a person’s value. Our Maitland office shifted to Kadina and Country Home Services has consolidated its community commitment through the Valley to Coast Program of community talks and information sessions. This concept is reflected in our new logo—green for valleys and blue for the coast, the places we want to be.