Four residents’ lives have changed thanks to a new Specialist Disability Accommodation (SDA) property in central Warrnambool.
Ken, Julie-Ann, Daryl and Nicole have been receiving independent living supports from disability services provider genU for some time, and their new home provides even greater support.
The property was completed in August by NDIS SDA provider Accessible Projects, after an extensive planning, design, approval and building process that spanned 3 years.
The property has accessibility features customised to each resident, as well an overnight assist unit which allows for 24/7 support from genU.
Resident Ken is settling into his new home after moving from his elderly parents’ place. His sister Shirley says that gaining access to SDA accommodation for him ‘was just like it was in the stars’. Ken’s placement in the home has eased his family’s uncertainty about how he would access the ongoing care that he needs.
‘Ken’s come a long way since being in the house’ Shirley says. ‘He’s getting out every day in his wheelchair as they’ve got walking tracks all around.’
The home ensures each resident can live as independently as possible, including an accessible ensuite each and close proximity to parks and public transport.
Property features include north facing living spaces allowing for plenty of natural light, oversized door openings, provisional power backup, accessible kitchens, stepless entries, accessible-height vegetable gardens and a nurse call system throughout.
‘These aren’t just slap-up, cookie-cutter houses’ emphasises Accessible Projects co-owner Michael Pearson. ‘These are custom built. A lot of thought goes into the design process, down to even the internal colours used for luminance contrast.’
‘We have worked with the participants, their families and support networks to tailor the house so it’s fit for purpose’ adds Will Hodgart, Michael’s business partner at Accessible Projects.
‘Our design ensures it’s a home internally and looks like any other house in the street.’
Will Hodgart says that the two love designing and building NDIS SDA homes because it’s all about the outcome of providing an accessible home.
‘Ultimately when you hand over the set of keys and there’s all the smiles and tears – that’s what it’s all about for us.’
On the new life that Ken will have in his own home, Shirley adds that ‘we are so happy to know that Ken is settled in his new home. The most important thing is that he is happy.’