Without the flexible care of Kevin from Carer Solutions, Shepparton local Michael Curtis would not be able to meet one of his personal goals: participating in the Great Victorian Bike Ride.
Leaving at the end of this week, Michael will ride from Orbost to Sale, a 300km journey over five days.
Michael, who has hereditary spastic paraplegia and mental illness, says life is there to be lived.
“You can either sit around and whinge about how you are and what you’ve got, or just go and live life the best you can, and that’s what I do,” Michael said.
“The Great Victorian Bike Ride is something I have always wanted to do.”
Michael says he couldn’t have committed to taking part without his support worker, Kevin.
“He worked through a couple of other providers, but he found they weren’t very flexible, which is not the case with Carer Solutions,” Michael said.
“So being flexible, I can ring Kev and say ‘Hey, Kevin, I’m not having a good day’ and if Kevin’s available, he will come across and be with me and do things for a day.”
Michael was able to employ Kevin through Carer Solutions’ direct employee service, which allows NDIS participants to choose their own support workers.
“Michael chose Kevin, somebody he knows, someone he trusts from within his own network, and employs him directly through our model,” Carer Solutions founder and chief executive Jane Morrell said.
“People come to us with who they want to employ, someone that they already know, already trust, have an existing relationship with, from within their own networks.
“Then we set that person up to be the legal employer of that person, getting a choice and control over who provides them with support.
“The whole benefit of the service is that people come to us with who they want to employ.”
Michael and Kevin have been training every Friday for Michael to be able to meet his goal.
“We have done a bit of training around here, but it is flat, and the ride is going to have rolling hills more than anything, so we have been riding the Great Victorian Rail Trail,” Michael said.
“I couldn’t do these things; I couldn’t do the bike ride, even the training without a carer — it is just not possible.
“For me, the NDIS has been really good; it has allowed me to do a lot of things that I wouldn’t be able to do.
Published Shepparton News | NOV 22, 2023 |