26 May 2017
Acquired Brain Injuries: Paul’s Story – By Interchange Australia Consultant, Katie Dobie
Interchange Australia provides a range of services that can assist people under the aged of 65 who are affected by an ABI (Acquired Brain Injury) across NSW. Acquired Brain Injury refers to any type of brain damage that happens after birth. Causes of ABI include disease, blows to the head, alcohol and drug use, or oxygen deprivation. Coping with the consequences of acquired brain injury can be difficult for everyone, including family members. Interchange Australia can provide support in the following areas:
- Participation in community, recreational and civic activities;
- Behaviour support;
- Assistance with daily personal activities;
- Development of daily life and living skills;
- Assistance to integrate into school or other educational programs;
- Assistance with household tasks;
- Support coordination;
- Assistance with travel and transport arrangements;
- Training for independence in travel and transport
- Physical wellbeing activities;
- Assistance with daily life tasks in a group or shared living arrangement and
- Leisure activities in a group or individually.
Client Case Study
Paul* has been a client of Interchange Australia since sustaining an ABI nearly 10 years ago. Paul has recently had his National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) package approved and this has not only allowed him to keep his current supports, but also to receive an increase support that are enabling him to make his life increasingly gratifying and rewarding.
When Paul’s mother passed away two years ago, he had to move out of the family home which he shared with her. Interchange Australia assisted Paul to apply for emergency accommodation close to his workplace at a local nursery. Paul is now a permanent resident of his one bedroom flat.
Interchange Australia also assisted Paul to apply for Public Guardianship and Financial Management through the Trustee and Guardian under the case management umbrella. Medication monitoring, social support, domestic assistance and personal care were also implemented. Now that Paul is funded by the NDIS we are able to continue case management under the Support Coordination umbrella and also the direct care supports as mentioned.
Through budgeting and planning with the assistance of an Interchange Australia, Paul has been able to save enough money to go on a seven day tour of Kakadu at the end of July. Paul has always been keen to drive again but since that is not possible, his consultant at Interchange Australia arranged for an Occupational Therapist to conduct a Physiotherapy assessment at the Brain Injury Unit at a hospital where they approved for Paul to ride a bike.
With the assistance of Interchange Australia support workers, Paul has undergone travel training and is now riding his bike independently to and from work.
Paul is a very social person and loves the company of his workmates and friends. Since Paul has been funded by the NDIS, he is now able to attend social outings on the weekends with his friends. Over the past six weeks, Paul has attended Wings Over Illawarra, a Jervis Bay Cruise and a trip to the Golden Ridge Animal Farm. He also enjoys the dinner groups Interchange Australia host fortnightly at Mittagong RSL Club and Springett House.
Interchange Australia has also assisted Paul with arranging support workers to accompany him to take his pets Monty and Maggie out twice a week for a long walk and a run. This is not only important for Monty and Maggie, but is also very important to Paul as he considers his pets to be his best friends.
Paul’s story demonstrates the positive outcomes that can be achieved for clients as a result of the combination of support services Interchange Australia provides.
If you have an ABI or you care for somebody with an ABI and want to learn more about the services Interchange Australia provides, please call one of our friendly and experienced Consultants on 1300 112 334.
* Paul gave his consent for the author to use his name in this article.