Who are disabled people and their supporters in New Zealand?

The New Zealand Disability Strategy reports that one in five people in New Zealand (that’s approximately 850,000 kiwis) live with a long-term impairment of some kind.  These members of our community come from all walks of life.  In other words, disability crosses all cultural, social, generational, economic, and political boundaries.  While people with disabilities are clearly not always engaged in rehabilitation activities and rehabilitation is only one small part of their lives, they represent a significant group of stakeholders in the rehabilitation community.

Likewise Carers NZ report that there are over 750,000 New Zealanders who provide a caregiving role to family/whānau members with impairments.  Added to this are the hundreds of thousands of people who a friends, partners, and advocates of people with disabilities.  Some organisations specialise in providing support and advocacy for certain populations of people with impairments and disability.  For a list of such disability advocacy and support groups click here.


What does this website offer disabled people and their supporters?

This website, hosted by the NZRA, offers a free and fully accessible forum to connect people involved in rehabilitation in New Zealand. The website provides regular news, columns, opinions, interviews and reviews.  The emphasis of these features is to promote discussion and debate of contemporary issues in rehabilitation today – to which you are invited to contribute. We believe that there is a growing need for greater communication between the different groups of people involved in rehabilitation: between funders, providers and recipients of rehabilitation services, between different health professional groups, and across different community groups.  We hope this website goes some way towards addressing this need. 

We encourage disabled people and their supporters to subscribe to our free newsletter and to make use of the ‘comments’ function at the bottom of our webpages to provide your own perspective on our featured columns.   Alternatively, you might like to write a letter to the editor of the website, contributing your opinions about rehabilitation in New Zealand.

We also welcome and encourage disabled people and their supporters to join the NZRA, to contribute to the organisation’s ongoing role in the promotion and development of rehabilitation in New Zealand.


Links of interest




Rehabilitation conference logoThe 2009 Rehabilitation Conference will be held in Queenstown on 21–25 July. More about the conference.