16 January 2020

It has been a big year for Clive, who was supported by Life Without Barriers to achieve his goal of moving to Melbourne.

This time last year, life looked very different for Clive, who receives Support Coordination from Life Without Barriers. Having lived in Hobart for many years, Clive was residing in a supported accommodation site run by a local provider, which proved to be quite a noisy and disruptive environment, negatively impacting on his life.

To escape from the noise in his share house, Clive was spending a few days each month at a local motel or hostel, but this was an expensive band-aid strategy that saw him become increasingly agitated and unhappy. Eventually, the Life Without Barriers Support Coordination team in Hobart was contacted to see if they could assist Clive find a better fit.

“On first meeting Clive, he talked quickly and loudly about how unhappy he was and how much he wanted to move to Melbourne and his hopes for the future there,” says Anne McKinstray, Clive’s Support Coordinator at Life Without Barriers.

“We talked about working together to make his dream a reality and how it could be possible, as well as how we would work through the bits that may be frustrating and would take time.”

Developing a great working relationship, Anne and Clive began to explore a potential move to Melbourne.

“There was lots of listening, reassuring, explaining and encouragement that took place,” adds Anne, “we worked on getting all the important people in Clive’s life together to set about a plan of attack.”

The following months involved considerable investigating, assessments, and regular communication across email, phone and meetings. Clive was involved in all the decisions, attending most of the conference calls and every meeting, ensuring he was at the centre of the process.

After careful consultation with Clive, a service was found in Melbourne that could provide the supports that he needed and wanted. Clive was eager to explore this new option, so FaceTime calls were arranged so he could experience a ‘virtual inspection’ of his potential new home and meet his prospective housemate, who proved to be very compatible.

With everything looking so promising, Clive and his support network organised for him to visit Melbourne, where he got to watch his beloved Essendon Bombers play football and visit his potential new home and housemate in person.

Another successful experience meant the team could progress in turning Clive’s goal into a reality. However, like many big decisions in life, there were some setbacks. “It could be very stressful at times as the wheels moved slowly, which meant Clive would swing from feeling confident to frustrated about the move,” explains Anne. “But we all pulled together, and support, encouragement, empathy and transparency were used by all in supporting Clive to stay on track and realise his goal.”

Once his new NDIS Participant Plan was approved and included the new Supported Independent Living (SIL) service in Melbourne, the team were able to confirm Clive’s move-in date.

In November, an incredibly excited (and nervous) Clive finally achieved his goal of moving to Melbourne.

Clive was adamant about maintaining his Support Coordination service with Life Without Barriers and through a handover between staff in Hobart and Melbourne, Clive now has a new Support Coordinator, Leah Colaiacovo.

Leah reports that Clive is settling in well and when chatting with Anne on the phone, he simply said “I am really good and yes I am happy, thank you for everything you have done for me.”

Clive’s move has also been a wonderful demonstration of how his support network, especially Anne, put the Life Without Barriers’ values of building relationships, respect and responsiveness into action in order support him to achieve his goals. We’re thrilled for Clive and wish him all the best in his new home.

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