Ricky’s favourite treat is banana bread and coffee. When he first joined Afford’s newly opened Supported Accommodation home in Baulkham Hills, banana bread and coffee was almost all he would agree to eat.

Ricky experiences difficulty in expressing and regulating his emotions. Since moving into his new Afford home, staff have taken time to get to know Ricky’s personality and unique needs better. They have worked in partnership with his mum to develop strategies to help him get involved in social activities and work on his life skills.

There were times when Ricky’s behaviours and emotions overwhelmed him. For a time, he would only wear black clothes. He also became accustomed to making banana bread and coffee from McDonald’s his primary meal, which he would only accept if his mum brought it to the house.

Working with Ricky’s mum, our staff devised ways to help Ricky place greater trust in staff and accept their support.

Over the following weeks, Ricky began getting dressed on his own, ready to go out. This was a significant milestone for him. Now, instead of calling his mum, Ricky approaches lifestyle assistants at his home to take him to McDonald’s to get his much-loved banana bread and coffee.

Today, Ricky gets dressed and willingly goes out with staff and his other two housemates, Jason and Marcus, to explore parks, the shops and the community.

Most recently, he asked his lifestyle assistant to go on a walk with him. Three hours later, they arrived home safely after lots of fresh air and exercise.

Having support to help him stay calm and work through his emotions has helped Ricky be the best he can be every day. With further encouragement from staff, Ricky now helps around the house. He is often seen in the kitchen helping to prepare dinner. He is also taking greater responsibility in keeping his home clean and tidy.

At just 24 years old, Ricky is now looking forward to a life that makes him feel safe and supported with opportunities to do the things he loves. Person-centred supports have given Ricky confidence to ask for support when he needs it.

With staff available to support Ricky 24/7 if or when he needs it, he now can enjoy all the things he wants to do and more.

“We are all so proud of how far Ricky has progressed in such a short time. He now feels comfortable going out and being part of social situations and asks to talk about his problems, which is great progress. He is even willing to share half of his banana bread with me,” said Allison, Team Leader at Afford’s Baulkham Hills Supported Accommodation.

“Our staff have been so supportive, encouraging, patient and determined to help Ricky on his journey. They have worked hard to help him overcome barriers and start to live life to the full.” added Allison

Find out more about Supported Accommodation options around Australia and how you can enjoy the benefits of the Afford lifestyle.

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