Nas is both an employee and Community Centre client of Afford who has recently achieved one of her bucket list dreams, experiencing a carefree day at the beach. However, as Nas is in a wheelchair, there are many things to consider when visiting the beach. For Nas, getting close to the water has been near impossible at most beach locations in the past.

When her Lifestyle Assistant, Mirian Madrigales, discovered that Malabar beach in Sydney’s Randwick had installed a mat for wheelchairs to glide right up to the water’s edge, she knew Nas would love it.

“Nas had been to beaches before but never had any access this close to the water and was excited. Being so close to the water is a whole different experience that many of us take for granted,” said Mirian.

The specially designed ‘Mobi-mat’ is the first of its kind in Sydney and is a permanent installation to enable people of all abilities to experience the ocean without limitations.

“I took off her shoes and socks to have the sand between her toes so that she could get the full experience. Nas reclined her chair and soaked in the sun. It was the best day,” continued Mirian.

Nas told Mirian, “For the first time in my life, I was really up close to the ocean and this made me feel free. I feel refreshed and accomplished.”

Over seven years with Afford, this day was one of her greatest achievements, alongside working in an admin role at Afford. Both working and receiving one to one service through Afford, has given Nas a unique experience and connection with the staff.

She said to Mirian, “I feel a special bond with each and every staff member at Afford. They are all like family and have accepted me.”

Nas’ goals for the future are to continue working for Afford, explore new places and go on a holiday when the time is right. We can’t wait to see what Nas achieves next.

Find out more about how you can start ticking off your bucket list dreams through our Community Centres and create meaningful memories. Our Afford Employment services can also help you can gain a sense of purpose, fulfilment and independence.

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