When Zara Davis came to Afford in June 2021, her goals were to improve her health, increase her community participation and develop life and social skills. Zara has been ticking off her goals since moving into Afford’s Mawson Lakes Supported Independent Living (SIL) and attending our Holden Hill Community Services in South Australia.

During our interview, Zara communicated mainly through one-word answers, and her cheeky personality and frequent smiles shone through. With Zara’s consent, her key worker Rajbir provided support to share more details about her journey over the past two years.

When Zara first moved into her new home, she struggled with her health and was quite withdrawn. Rajbir explained that Zara has now become much more talkative, social and active.

“She used to live in her own room, and she was not interested when we say: ‘Okay, come sit with us.’ In one year, we have seen so much difference in Zara.

Now she’s really talkative. If she goes out, and someone can talk to her, she can communicate,” Rajbir said.

There are great indicators that being an Afford client has had a positive impact on Zara’s wellbeing. Rajbir spoke about changes to Zara’s mental health, with her grandparents and parents noticing a “change in her soul”.

Zara attends the Holden Hill Community Service three days per week, where she has a busy social calendar. When asked what she enjoys about going to Holden Hill, Zara replied, “we will walk. We do colouring. Cooking.”

During a recent National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) plan review, Zara’s support coordination funding model was changed from specialist to standard, as she no longer needs such intensive support. Plus, her core NDIS funding was increased to allow for more community access participation.

Zara’s goals for the future include further improvements in her health, increased community participation, and working more on her mobility. Her progress shows the positive impact of individualised support and meaningful community connections.

This story is from the May edition of Afford News. Click here to read more.

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