Claire's move to independent living in Melbourne

29 April 2020

Transitioning to independent living has been a very positive step for Claire, and has helped her grow hugely as a person, and build better relationships with her support staff.

Claire chooses Life Without Barriers services and lives in supported accommodation. Claire, moved out of her family home into shared and supported accommodation with three other residents in Melbourne’s metro area a little over five years ago. Moving into the house was initially a big change for Claire, living with strangers was a huge transition. For Claire, routine is important, as is doing one thing at a time. Unfortunately during the move, Claire's iPad became a source of distraction and was detrimental to her routine in her new home. As a result, the iPad was kept by her family for use when she visited them, which was disappointing for Claire but helped her settle in much better.

Recently, Claire moved into a separate unit attached to the residence, where she now lives independently. With help from Mum (Lyn), Dad (Gerry), her Brother (Todd), and Life Without Barriers staff, she has been busy making the space her own. The move has helped Claire to achieve some of her personal goals, such as furthering her independence, using clear communication with her support workers, and creating and following a regular routine. Another of Claire’s goals was to bring back her iPad for use at home, a goal that has been achieved!

Since the move, Claire has shown a lot of independence. She actively participates in her daily living tasks, and often engages in them without being prompted. Claire also loves to cook, and she make lunch for herself or contributes to the meals prepared for the attached group home. Other tasks she loves being a part of include washing the dishes, taking out the rubbish and recycling for herself, and gathering her laundry items, then taking them to the laundry.

When working with staff, Claire has choices of what tasks and activities she would like to do. She has her own TV now, so that she can choose to watch whatever she wants, often the cooking channel! She also has easy access to her art and craft items, kept in one of her storage cupboards. One of her favourite activities is to create pictures to hang on the wall or to give to her family. Claire has also been able to host various visits from her family in her unit, something she enjoys doing a lot. This can be done with minimal staff presence, allowing her and the family more privacy and quality time.

Claire still has Life Without Barriers support worker available to assist her with required tasks. This helps her focus on the tasks that need to be done, without the distraction of other tenants. Having most facilities available in her unit also encourages Claire’s independence, with less reliance on facilities in the group home. Transitioning to independent living has been a very positive step for Claire, and has helped her grow hugely as a person, and build better relationships with her support staff.

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