NSLHD News September 23 2022

Books for babies on International Literacy Day For the last 15 years Wendy Bean from the Australian Literacy Educators’ Association, Sydney North, has been donating books to the newest members of the community. Every year Wendy delivers books to Royal North Shore Hospital’s maternity unit and neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) to tie in with International Literacy Day.

was very grateful for the donation. “Wendy has provided a beautiful collection of books for us,” Carmel said. “These will be treasured by parents spending precious time with their babies.” Wendy thanked staff at RNSH for distributing the books. “ALEA Sydney North is

One-day-old baby Edward received one of his very first books, Time for bed, while in the RNSH’s maternity ward. His mum Catherine wasted no time to start reading it to him. RNSH Midwifery Unit Manager at the maternity ward Mary Cameron said the new books are always appreciated and well- received by new parents. “Thank you so much to the North Sydney Australian Literacy Educators’ Association for the books as this assists in raising awareness of the importance of literacy,” Mary said. RNSH NICU Discharge Coordinator Carmel Pearsall runs the book library in the NICU and Northern Sydney Local Health District’s Employee Resource Network for Disability (ERNoD) is continuing its efforts to increase the presence and voices of people with a disability. Group member and Royal North Shore Hospital Occupational Therapist Elise Kerle was one of the ERNoD representatives at the recent Australian Network on Disability’s Annual Conference. Various business leaders, advocates and other experts attended the conference, which examined how accessibility and inclusion can best be promoted and successfully embedded in organisations. “There was a presentation from the ABC which discussed the representation of people with a disability in the media,” she said. “That resonated with me because as a health service we should be reflecting the community we serve. “If you look around Royal North Shore Hospital, for example, you will see people in wheelchairs. There’s millions of people around the world with a disability leading successful lives, so having staff here with that lived experience themselves is vital. “This was a good chance to see what can be implemented to make a positive difference to people’s lives and ensure NSLHD is providing an inclusive workplace for everyone.” ERNoD is a voluntary, employee-led group which meets bi-monthly to discuss ways to

grateful to staff for distributing the books over the last couple of years,” Wendy said. “This has

allowed us to continue the program during COVID-19 restrictions.” Group working to increase voice of disabled people at NSLHD Mum Catherine reads to her one-day-old baby Edward

better support people with a disability, as well as their supporters and carers. It was formed as part of the district’s Diversity, Inclusion and Belonging Strategy 2020-22. Planned activities include further promotion around this year’s International Day of People with Disability, which takes place on December 3 and aims to increase public awareness and understanding of people with a disability. “More than four million people in Australia – so about 20 per cent - have some form of disability, but I think there’s only about three per cent within NSLHD who identify as disabled,” Elise said. “We must ensure we create opportunities for people who identify as disabled to feel comfortable working here.”

Elise said the group is always looking for new members. It is open to people at NSLHD with a disability, carers of people with a disability or advocates for the employment of people with a disability.

Elise Kerle (right), pictured with Tess Whelan, Program coordinator with the Stepping Into Internships organisation at the recent Australian Network on Disability’s Annual Conference



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