Within moments of meeting Michael you can get a sense of the fun loving, friendly and personable man that he is. Michael has always enjoyed sports. A severe traumatic brain injury, as a result of a fall, meant many changes to Michael’s life. But it didn’t change his love of sports. Especially rugby league (he is a keen Eels supporter) as well as ten pin bowling, soccer and swimming.
Michael had unsuccessfully tried a number of other group based programs before joining Headway ADP. Through individually tailored support Michael was soon fully participating in all of the activities offered at Headway ADP. He has enjoyed group programs including music therapy, men’s group, outings, ten pin bowling, B.E.A.T and memory training. In between groups Michael can often be found enjoying a joke and a game of Uno. Individual goal setting has supported Michael to return to swimming and hydrotherapy, develop an exercise program, drumming lessons and increase his social skills and maintain friendships.
The change to the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) was viewed with some trepidation by Michael’s mother Irene. Irene provides fulltime care to Michael and at times has had to struggle to find and access appropriate services and supports. Her very real concern that the NDIS plan might not reflect Michael’s high level support needs and the ongoing impact of his hidden disabilities was alleviated through Headway ADP’s thorough pre-planning process and strong advocacy. Headway ADP provides individualised support coordination that has enabled Michael not only to retain all of his existing supports, services and providers but to substantially increase the amount of support he receives each day. Irene is pleased with the continuity of care that has been provided and that she can rely on a service provider who really understands the intricacies of acquired brain injury and has the knowledge to navigate the new landscape. Michael is now working hard on his goals of improving his fitness and developing skills to live independently.
Michael is also a member of the Community Education Team. His personal story about risk taking and consequences is listened to enthusiastically by both teenagers and adults audience alike. Reflecting Michael’s positive attitude to life he states in his motto “So don’t let alcohol ruin your life. Alcohol won’t make you superman. But remember, always have a laugh. There is humorous side to everything”.