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HD Spotlight on John Conaghan

SOCIAL WORKER Hunter HD Service, John Hunter Hospital, Newcastle NSW

Q. Why did you decide to become a social worker?
A.  I think I had been pondering for a while about what to do with my life. I liked the humanities at uni and it probably grew from there. I also think that various life experiences propelled me to have a genuine interest in the relational and emotional self. Social work seemed to be the best fit for me.

Q. How did Huntington’s disease become your specialty?
A. I first was introduced to HD when I was studying social work in Melbourne in the early 1980s. I ended up working as a care assistant at a place called Mary’s Mount which was a care facility for people with HD. It was this experience which made me interested in HD and hence applying for the job I currently have back in 1991. I remember being challenged by how I could be helpful to people with an incurable disease and this stuck with me for some time before I went into the work.

Q. What’s the best part about working with HD families?
A. Without a doubt the longer term nature of the relationship with families, bearing witness to people’s courage, resilience, compassion, sadness and love for each other.

Q. What keeps you enthusiastic about your job?
A. The idea of working in the service of others, the development and maintenance of the relationship with people who have HD and their families and the hope of a better treatment.

Q. What is your ideal Sunday?
A. Knocking over a few jobs around the house, a pot of ginger infused chai tea with my partner Suzie over lunch and playing some cricket with my son Tomas at the nets in the afternoon.

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We are recruiting – Support Services Administrator

Published date: 2 February, 2023

We have created a new position for an enthusiastic and committed person wanting to be part of an inclusive and supportive team in a growing NDIS specialist business and specialised programs, supporting people living with Huntington’s disease (HD) and their families. In this part-time role you will be responsible for providing administration support to a ... Read more

CEO announcement for Huntington’s Australia

Published date: 16 January, 2023

Following the recent announcement about State Association memberships agreeing to proceed with a national merger, Huntington’s Australia (HA) has appointed a new CEO to lead the new association. Lenni Duffield, from Huntington’s WA, has been unanimously endorsed by the HA Board as the inaugural CEO of Huntington’s Australia. Lenni has held senior roles and provided ... Read more

Members have agreed to merge into a new, single entity, Huntington’s Australia

Published date: 6 December, 2022

We’ve got some great news to share! Members of five State and Territory organisations (Queensland, NSW ACT, Tasmania, SA&NT and WA) have agreed to merge into a new, single entity, Huntington’s Australia (HA). We are all very excited about the opportunities this will provide to the Huntington’s community. The merger will bring together five associations ... Read more
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HD News Spring 2022

Published date: 22 November, 2022

Download your copy of HD News Spring edition by clicking on the link. Some of the highlights in this edition are: Information on the proposed merger Growth of our NDIS team Walk 4 Hope wrap up Youth Connection program update and some exciting news We hope that you enjoy this edition of HD News. If you ... Read more

Awarded for the Association Turnaround of the Year

Published date: 10 November, 2022

The Association Awardsᵀᴹ recognise excellence and accomplishment by associations and outstanding individuals. In addition to recognition, the process of nominating for an Award will be a worthwhile experience as it will encourage associations to consider the factors that make a successful association, turnaround or campaign.
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APDA – The Good, The Bad & The Hack

Published date: 10 October, 2022

Huntington's NSW ACT is a member of The Accessible Product Design Alliance (APDA), which is a group of not-for-profit consumer health organisations working together to represent people with chronic conditions who are significantly impacted by inaccessible products and packaging. This campaign aims for those living with a disability to share their experience of different products to raise awareness of accessible and inaccessible experiences, support others to make their lives easier and help us educate product and packaging manufactures about what they need to improve.