Proposed: Fraser Coast Aqua Therapy Association

UPDATED: 24th Jan 2011 14:00.

Jan/Feb 2011 Newsletter:

Hello to one and all,

Re: Proposed new Fraser Coast Aqua Therapy Association (FCATA):

Please read carefully and if you have an interest in the proposed program, please complete the attached questionnaire section.

We are in the first stages of establishing this program. The ‘greater- detail’ about the program, and what it plans to provide for the greater Fraser Coast community, is still in the process of being defined. It will largely depend on the information gained from the responses to the QUESTIONNAIRE information gathering exercise.

The initial plan is to provide services to three (3) designated ‘Tier’ groups and to be structured as follows:

1. Tier 1 level: This grouping is the most important and includes handicapped and disabled persons who require full/part time carers.

2. Tier 2 level: This group is represented by self help disability pensioners, and other pensioners with mobility issues, who wish to become involved with aqua therapy/exercise on a regular basis.

3. Tier 3 level: This group is represented by all the other pensioner groups, including self funded or people living independently who want to be part of a healthier exercise program so they can stay independent.

Over the next 2-3 months, the information gathered from the attached questionnaire about participant interest, volunteer indications, professional services providers, office holders on committee, and the Associations Rules and guidelines will all become an information path for the way forward. The information gained will give us some idea just what number and type of interested participants we will have to start with.

The Fraser Coast Regional Council (FCRC) gave clear indications they do not want to be supportive or involved with this program at this stage. This is from both the Mayoral and Councillor level, and also by Senior Council staff.

It is hoped the responses received during this information gathering period, will provide statistical data to demonstrate this program is needed in this community. This will hopefully alter the Council’s opinion about becoming a supporter of this program.

The results of this Questionnaire will directly determine what level of interest the Fraser Coast Regional Council will involve itself with the program. Failure to demonstrate the need will allow Council to back away from supporting this program.

The biggest issue identified to date will be transport, both its availability and the means of transport will be the problem. This problem will be one of the first tasks undertaken by any formed Committee in trying to find a way, and means to provide transport requirements for the handicapped and disabled participants of the program who require special transport needs.

OzCare have indicated that via their Home and Community Care program (HACC), they might be interested in becoming involved with such a program as that proposed, if the need can be demonstrated.

The program has as its core value, a want and focus to assist those who are impacted by either a handicap, or disability, and as a result suffer restrictive mobility issues that can be improved with ‘aqua-therapy’ activity.
The program will offer designer exercise and rehabilitation classes, all aqua based and conducted by professional and other trained employees/volunteers. Depending on the success of the initial pilot program, and funding availability, it is planned to expand the program to provide for all of the greater Fraser Coast Region.

It is important for all interest participants and other parties who would want to help with the program, to respond to the questionnaire submission form linked here.

Whichever pool locality, either Maryborough or Hervey Bay, has the greater number of eligible participants, will be where the initial program commences. There will also be some initial eligibility criteria, and this may well depend on the severity of individual mobility issues, and availability of transport, and professional staff to manage those issues.

If the response is for greater numbers, the initial pilot program will address those with the greater needs. This might also be determined by Pool availability, and the Fraser Coast Regional Councils willingness to participate in the program.
All parties who indicated any type of interest, will be responded to.

The proposed program will require generous community assistance via volunteers, and the financial support of local businesses. State and Federal funding will be applied for, but until that funding is approved, the program will have very limited and restrictive services and will rely largely on the communities support and other smaller funding availability.

A working committee will be formed as soon as possible when levels of interest in these positions from the questionnaire begin to arrive. Local newspapers will be asked to run Community ads and promotional information about the program.

Please, if you think that this type of program will assist you with your mobility and health issues, please complete the QUESTIONNAIRE, linked here

If you know of anyone who might be aided by this program, or would be interested in helping such a program get up and running, please pass on the information contained hereto.

Thank you for your interest.

  1. February 11, 2011 at 7:56 am

    I only want to make a comment. With the HB Pool. Is it only the Outside Heated Pool you will be using? The inside one is used 5 days a week by other people for hydrotherapy, with one or two disabled people who uses it and we enjoy their company when there. Your statement “Exclusive pool use” has me quite concerned about the other members of the community have access when they need it. I would like your response, but don’t sign me up for updates or other emails. Thanks

  2. February 11, 2011 at 8:24 am

    Thanks for the feedback Maree – at this stage it is planned to use the outdoor heated pool at both centers – subject to availability – that is still to be determined in discussions with council over the program’s access to either pool. I am not sure where the term ‘Exclusive pool use’ appears – but to explain further – the aqua-therapy program will need to fit in with the existing pool’s commitments. There will not be a request to make either pool ‘exclusively’ available to the program – it will be like any other group wanting to use the pool – by arrangement and based on the needs of the program and its members and how the pools resources can be best used.

  3. March 30, 2011 at 10:13 am

    There is an acqua therapy pool in maryborough for those who qualify to use it via
    health professionals.
    There is also a heated small pool in Maryborough which is used by thew whole community including many groups of up to 30 school children and babies who, in succession, pee and poo in the pool, it is also used by folk with disabilities.
    Is this NEW idea meant to recreate the heated pool as in Maryborough at Hervey Bay. If this is the case, where will it be put so that Fraser Coast folk can use it, ie. Tiaro, Burrum Heads, River Heads etc and will transport be available.
    The word HERE in your press releases has little meaning unless it is defined.
    Just aother thing, where are you going to find a filter capable of removing the pee and poo left by users on a regular basis.
    I have supported and led many community projects in Maryborough over a number of years but never have I heard of such a crazy idea as the one now proposed.
    It should be remembered that the old therapy pool at the base hospital was closed, not just because of the poo in the water but because the time lapse for the deposit of the pool and the healthy elimination of same was so great that the pool could only be used for one or two hours a day. If the committee would like to check my words, go have a sniff at the end of the current heated pool, but don’t do that if you have a weak tummy.

    • March 30, 2011 at 10:45 am

      Hello Cliff –

      Council have advised the Maryborough Pool complex will begin renovations from Sept 2011 – there is intent to discuss with the Management of the Maryborough Base Hospital hydrotherapy pool about this program gaining access. That is still some ways off as the Association is in the formative stages of establishing itself.

      Your concern over ‘poo and wee’ issues are noted – from a health perspective it is not deemed to be a significant health risk in chlorinated pools. Obviously we would all prefer not to have to deal with the problem but how do you stop children doing what is natural at a young age. Most people accept that it is happening – even by some adults – but the chlorination is there to protect the health of all users of the pool.

      To clarify some of the other issues you raised – the program intends to initially use the Heated pools at both Hervey Bay and Maryborough – be it that the Maryborough pool will be out of action from September 2011 for some time – this ‘crazy idea’ you refer to has the potential to deliver a great and needed community service – there are over 5,500 disability and 14,000+ aged pensioners in the Fraser Coast region. More than 30,000 aged 55 and over – health resources are stretched and this program is targeting these people and intends to provide an affordable aqua-therapy program for those with mobility issues.

      We are looking for volunteers to help with the program and the TIER structures cater for this also. Please read the ‘Model Rules’ and update yourself with the proposed program and apart from the ‘pee and poo’ issue – hopefully you will be encouraged to become a part of the program.

      regards … Ian.

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