Opportunities for people with disabilities to reach personal goals

For 47-year-old Gordon, relocating to CatholicCare’s supported accommodation in early 2015 resulted in a number of benefits.

Since moving from a nursing home, Gordon now has the ability to interact with others who share similar interests, and has developed great friendships with his fellow housemates. With 24-hour tailored support, Gordon is also empowered to gain independent living skills. And yet, according to registered nurse and member of the Disability Services team, Orla Kingston, the advantages of CatholicCare’s supported accommodation extend well beyond those who access these services.

“They are the most wonderful teachers that I have had. Through their own journey, they have displayed such positivity, determination and wisdom, it’s been a pleasure to learn from their amazing stories and life experiences,” Orla Kingston said.

Orla is not alone in helping Gordon receive customised support, unique to his needs. With a recently re-aligned Disability Services team, she works alongside a number of passionate House Co-ordinators, led by newly appointed Operations Manager, Dean Kidd. The qualified and dedicated staff pride themselves on developing strong relationships with not only those in their care, but also with families and carers, whilst working together to help those with a disability achieve their personalised goals.

Gordon’s aim centres on returning to the workforce. Already, Gordon is assisted to co-ordinate his active participation in the local community, which includes group activities such as karate and fishing. However, CatholicCare is currently working with him and the NDIS to achieve his ultimate goal. Again, staff have stressed the advantages of this are twofold.

“I love working in a team that shares my passion for delivering a high standard of care. I feel privileged to facilitate opportunities for people we support to achieve their goals and create opportunities to develop independence,” House Co-ordinator, Billie Moore, said. 

“I am also thankful for the lessons they have taught me. Each of them has the best outlook on life. Despite the challenges they face on a day-to-day basis they have this wild enthusiasm for life and to keep improving. It is very much contagious and an admirable quality,” said Billie. 

CatholicCare Disability Services currently assists dozens of people who, like Gordon, could use a helping hand to achieve their personal best.

“People with a disability have the same rights and responsibilities as all members of society. Their goal is our focus,” Director of CatholicCare, Ms Helga Smit, said.

From 1 July, people with disabilities living in Manning and Great Lakes will be able to join residents in Newcastle, Lake Macquarie and Maitland in gaining access to NDIS funding. CatholicCare is a registered provider with the NDIS. Our local, friendly and knowledgeable staff are here to help people with disabilities in our community transition to this new funding model. CatholicCare staff can work with you to tailor support services to meet your individual needs.

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Lizzie Watkin Image
Lizzie Watkin

Lizzie is Team Leader Content for the Diocese of Maitland-Newcastle.

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