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   Aug 21

Barriers come down for people with disabilities

OPPORTUNITIES: Program graduate David Morey has achieved many of his aspirations because of Life Without Barriers.
Nanjing Night Net

LIFE Without Barriers (LWB) has opened the doors of a brand new office in Nowra.

The non-profit organisation provides an important community service to ensure the best care and support is developed for those needing additional assistance in their everyday life.

This includes delivering a range of programs for children, young people, older people and those with disabilities who often need support in their homes and set them on the right path to achieving their goals.

The new location will provide a hub for senior staff, program co-ordinators as well as a base to run training programs and workshops.

The office was opened recently by Minister for Disability Services, John Ajaka, together with area operations manager for Life Without Barriers, Edward Birt, who said having the Shoalhaven office in a prominent location was a win for service delivery in the area.

“What we see time and again when you open a regional hub, people just feel so much more connected, better supported and able to access the service when they need it,” Mr Birt said.

“It builds on all of those networks and relationships we have in the region. Often when you’re looking for answers and solutions for the people you are working with, that’s going to come through those networks and relationships.”

The Shoalhaven has some 50 adults with disabilities and 20 children and young people in care, who currently access the LBW service.

“From this office we do disability support services as well as out-of-home care support services,” he said.

“There are a number of foster care families in the Shoalhaven. So we’ll have a case manager based here as well as a supporter of carers, who go out and work with those families and the people who reside with them.”

Mr Birt said one of the main aims for LWB is to see people get the opportunities in life everyone is entitled to.

“We want to get outcomes,” he said.

“We see people’s potential. A bit of walking side-by-side with somebody and support at the right level is important. Some of the people we support have significant impairments other people have less so. We support right through and it doesn’t matter where the person is, that’s not the issue, it’s about coming in at the right level and ensuring that people are doing everything they can be doing.

“All people inherently get a kick out of doing things for themselves, be you five or 95 years old.”

David Morey, a LWB graduate, who now has a job he loves at the Postman’s Tavern, is a shining example of the transformation LBW can make to people’s lives.

“We set goals at the start of the program, I wanted to get into hospitality and get my certificate III in commercial cookery,” Mr Morey said.

“Life Without Barriers helped me with that by coming, sitting down and going through the exam with me.”

Mr Morey also achieved what is considered to be a rite of passage for most independent teenagers.

“I’ve also got my licence, which was one of my goals. I was a bit hesitant and they pushed me with that,” he said.

“They came to the RMS and helped me fill out all the forms.

“Because I also have epilepsy, you have to wait five years and they helped me with all the doctor’s forms.”

Normally, a two-year program, Mr Morey achieved his goals in only 18 months.

“I got the job with Postman’s Tavern and once you get so many hours’ worth of work, you move out of the program because you have accomplished everything you wanted.”

This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.

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