Welcome to the Oamaru branch

Tēnā koutou, tēnā koutou, tēnā koutou katoa.

If you live in or near Oamaru, please contact us for support, advice and information relating to disability. Our services are community based and we have staff providing a variety of services for disabled people and their family and whānau and the wider community.


We offer a range of services for disabled people and their family and whānau. All our support services (with the exception of Mobility Parking and Total Mobility) are free.

There are a number of ways you can access them. While some of our services may need a referral and not all the services offered by CCS Disability Action are available from our branch, please get in touch with us directly to discuss your needs and what we can offer you.

You could also contact your GP or AccessAbility as they can assess your needs and connect you with support providers.

Local Advisory Committee

Our branch is guided by a Local Advisory Committee that is made up of members who provide governance and leadership over our local branch operations.

You can contact Local Advisory Committee Chair Chriss Spooner on Governance.Waitaki@ccsDisabilityAction.org.nz or phone 03 437 9005. 

Local Executive Committee

Our Local Executive Committee is made up of members who provide financial management and oversight at a branch level. You can contact Local Executive Committee Chair Cathy Hurst on Governance.Waitaki@ccsDisabilityAction.org.nz or phone 03 437 9005.

If you’re interested in learning more about how you can make a difference as part of our Governance, we would love to hear from you. Email Governance.Waitaki@ccsDisabilityAction.org.nz or phone 03 437 9005.

Support us

There are a number of ways you can support our work in communities. If you wish to make a donation or bequest, volunteer your services to our branch, find out about membership, or enquire about becoming a caregiver for us, please visit Support Us or contact our branch directly.

If you'd like to make a donation to the Oamaru branch be sure to select Waitaki when you complete the online form.


Waitaki Annual Report 2017/2018 (PDF 2 MB)
Contact Information
  • Street Address

    316 Thames Highway
    Oamaru 9400

  • Postal Address

    PO Box 468
    Oamaru 9444

Cathy Hurst

Cathy Hurst

Cathy has lived in North Otago for most of her life apart from a couple of small stints in Southland and overseas in Canada and England. She is married to Russell and they have three sons in their twenties. Russell and Cathy farm on the Waitaki Plains, mostly dairy cows but also a few merino sheep. Cathy also runs her own business, The Quilting Shed, from a converted farm building on the property.

Cathy strongly believes in service to the community and a favourite quote is: “Service is the price we pay for the privilege of living on this earth” – Anonymous. Outside of CCS Disability Action , Cathy was appointed a Justice of the Peace in 2010 and became a Judicial Justice of the Peace in 2016. Cathy has served on her local North Otago J P Association Board since 2012 and is currently the Southern Regional Rep on the Justice of the Peace National Board.

She is also a member of the Zonta Club of Oamaru, having previously been both Secretary and President. Previous community involvement includes four years on the Board at Waihi Preparatory School as well as various positions in the more distant past in local organisations such as Plunket, Playcentre, Netball and Squash Clubs and Young Farmers.

Chriss Spooner

Chriss Spooner


After a working life mostly around New Zealand, Chriss and her husband John have retired to Oamaru. They have three sons (all engineers), a foster son and grandchildren.

Chriss completed her nursing training in Christchurch, travelled, and then with John lived mainly in the South Island. John’s employment as a civil engineer often enabled the family to experience different communities and all they offer. During this time Chriss also worked in Wanganui and Westport as an administrator for the local IHC branches and trained with Plunket, practicing in the Kaikoura district.

Chriss was visiting the local Waitaki CCS Disability Action branch when she was introduced to the local LAC Chair, who invited her to join the LAC.  After years of committee work with Disabled Persons Assembly (DPA) in Dunedin, past work with Plunket, Trade Aid and school groups and having had a life-long personal history of disability, this seemed like a good fit.

Mel Smith

Mel Smith

My role is to support the running of the six entities in the South Island and to support local leadership to provide quality services to people in urban and rural areas around the island.

My association with CCS Disability Action began in 2000 when I was a student social worker at Otago University. During my placement I recognised how easily my values align with those of CCS Disability Action, and after graduation I joined the Southland branch as a Support Worker and then Community Worker (now Service Coordinator).

To alter my horizons, I moved to Western Australia to work at the Deaf Society, where I ran the employment and community services departments. A qualified sign language interpreter, I never thought when I moved to Australia that I would need to learn another language!

I saw the Team Leader role in Otago advertised in 2009 and came home to take up that position. When the region restructured, I also became Team Leader in Waitaki and later moved into the acting Regional Manager role. In October 2016 I commenced as the General Manager of the new Southern Region.

CCS Disability Action is a family affair for me. My Mum is a Service Coordinator in the Southland branch. I had my son while working as Team Leader in Otago and he came back to work with me at 11 weeks of age. My partner is a researcher at the Donald Beasley Institute and has partnered with us on projects. My stepdaughter is a student at Otago University. My work-home life divide can sometimes be a bit blurry, but I quite like that.

Hari-Priya Day

Hari-Priya Day

Te Amorangi ki mua, te hapai o ki muri

The leader at the front and the workers behind the scenes.

(Meaning both leaders and workers are important.)

Originally from Rotorua, after an adventure living in Australia working in the hotel industry, including time in Ayers Rock, my husband and I returned home and are now proud to call Invercargill our new rock. 

We have two energetic, smart, beautiful children who bring us joy and laughter. They happen to also live with disabilities; or Abilities as our daughter would point out – she has just won a Netball prize for her school at the time of writing this.

CCS Disability Action has always been a big part of our lives.  We have been active members since 2004 and I have been a member of the local Advisory Committee and then elected co-chair in 2013. I am proud to live and support the CCS Disability Action Vision.

I believe it is important to encourage others to see that we are all one community here to look out for each other, as different as we all are; we are all the same with our own hopes and dreams.

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