CÜRA was founded back in 2013 as the Aged & Community Services branch of the Multicultural Communities Council Gold Coast, or MCCGC. CÜRA (pronounced Coo-ra) means “care” in Latin and brings to life our vision for an inclusive community that values cultural diversity.
In response to the growing number of migrants, new arrivals and refugees in Australia, The Multicultural Communities Council Gold Coast Inc was established by a passionate group of volunteers and representatives from various ethnic communities, clubs and associations.
The MCCGC received a grant for research into migrant people with dementia on the Gold Coast to assist them in accessing support.
We received a Women’s Health grant for a new project. For this project, we trained ethnic women and set up mobile stations in shopping centres to give out information on community support, translated into different languages. These workers were able to talk to shoppers in their own language and let them know what kind of assistance they could access in their community.
This project aimed to encourage health service providers to use Translating and Interpreting Services (TIS). Providing interpreters for clients is a patient’s right and not a privilege. We sent many letters to specialist doctors and pushed for articles to run in the newsletter of the Division of Gold Coast General Practitioners, urging doctors to use the service.
We successfully applied to fund a part-time worker for three years under the Older People’s Action Program from the Department of Family Services Aboriginal and Islander Affairs. This grant is specifically created to address the social isolation needs of NESB seniors on the Gold Coast.
The MCCGC also established the Multicultural Home and Community Care In-Home Respite Program, which provided bilingual care workers to provide services to frail aged and younger people with disabilities and of ethnic backgrounds within the Gold Coast Region. This program enabled customers to live with dignity and independence in their own home environments and reduce inappropriate entry to residential care. 15 packages were funded by the Department of Health and Family Services. All of these packages are now in place.
The MCCGC established a Multicultural Day Respite Centre (MARC) to provide activities, excursions and culturally familiar food and entertainment to the community at the Carrara Community Centre. We wanted to create a welcoming environment that encouraged interaction and socialisation.
We also created Multicultural Community Aged Care Packages and started offering a Multicultural Seniors Program for the more active culturally and linguistically diverse individuals designed to reduce social isolation and encourage active participation in community life.
We established a Multicultural Innovative Dementia Services Pilot Program.
In July MCCGC moved to new premises at Currumburra Road, Ashmore.
We also began a year-long project to determine how to best meet the needs of culturally and linguistically diverse seniors in the Gold Coast Region, which has a highly fragmented population of older people. The project involved liaising with mainstream service providers, government and non-government organisations and multicultural communities of the Gold Coast to develop information and service delivery strategies. These strategies aimed to improve the access, quality and appropriateness of service delivery for multicultural and linguistically diverse people.
One of the outcomes of the project is the Multicultural Awareness Kit. This kit contains resources and training materials utilised by mainstream service providers promoting and developing cultural awareness and sensitivity in multicultural communities’ interactions.
We also undertook a three-year pilot project beginning with the Queensland Islamic Women’s Association and Queensland Transcultural Mental Health. This project enabled the elderly from a non-English speaking background, diagnosed with dementia and requiring a high level of care, to remain in their own homes rather than having to enter mainstream residential care. This means that their cultural, religious and spiritual needs could be better met.
Our third Aged Care Program underwent a name change from the Older Person’s Action Program to the Multicultural Seniors Program but it continues to provide information and support for culturally and linguistically diverse seniors and enable them to continue to be active members of their communities.
MCCGC first received government funding to deliver the Community Partners Program (CPP). This program assists older people with significant aged care needs and their families in understanding and accessing aged care services to support their continued health and wellbeing.
Since 2005, MCCGC has worked specifically with 17 different CALDB community groups on the Gold Coast to provide information and promote an enhanced understanding of aged care services and how to access them. Furthermore, MCCGC has equipped numerous service providers with resource kits and provided training to enhance cultural competency in the workplace. We also set up a monthly Carer Support Group to provide information and support.
Under the Extended Aged Care at Home (Dementia) Program which was implemented in 2006, the MCCGC was the first service provider on the Gold Coast to be allocated packages under this new program. Today, we continue to deliver services to clients through this program.
This year we launched the ‘International Café’, delivered as part of Seniors Week on the Gold Coast. This event attracted approximately 500 guests who benefited from a diverse and informative program. This event has been supported by the Department of Communities and The Gold Coast City Council for several years.
CÜRA successfully tendered 30 Consumer Directed Care Community Aged Care Packages in the Cabool/Moreton Bay region of Queensland.
We received funding for our Partners in Recovery program to help participants navigate mental health services and identify options that may assist in their recovery.
This year we extended our range of service offerings to include social work, nursing, and technology, ensuring holistic services are available for both the under 65 and senior services under this program. This included several smaller programs to support our seniors to participate in community activities, such as Tech Savvy Seniors and the CÜRA Café.
We also secured a three-year contract with Queensland Health providing dementia care, which included structuring services to help carers work or study while supporting their loved ones.
We expanded our Wellness Centre to include health and wellbeing programs and a multi-sensory relaxation room.
At CÜRA, we’re here to help. We have worked hard to cultivate close ties with our local communities, helping to enrich the lives of those who need a little extra support. Here are some of the ways in which we can help you.