Most good examples of supported living in Australia have been the result of people getting started, with or without funding, on what they want. What these families share is a clear, strong idea of people with disability being able to live where and how they want, with flexible, individualised support.
Reading what others have done may give you some ideas and inspiration, but the first steps you decide to take will depend on the person with a disability you are thinking about and what they want.
The examples and stories provided below show it is possible to get supported living for
people with all kinds of disability and support needs.
Adam Moves Out – An information resource for Adam's moving out of home experience. This is a step by step approach taken by Adam’s family and friends to realise a dream of Adam having a place of his own that he can call home. There are stories, videos and many ideas that are shared to assist other families in this process.
Zara is a woman with high physical, medical and intellectual support needs who had a dream of one day moving out of her family home and into a home of her own. With the help of her mum and Marie, a facilitator from a supported living organisation, Zara has been happily living in a home share arrangement for the past 6 years.
Planning for Mena
From the time Mena was quite young, her family, with the help of a support ‘circle’ has thought about how they could achieve work, relationships and a home for Mena. At 28, Mena has now lived in a home of her own, with support, for over 9 years.
David, now 43, acquired a brain injury 20 years ago. After attending a workshop and thinking about the material it presented about social roles, Brenda had a bright idea: “We’ll build him a house”. With very little funding, no knowledge about building and not much of an idea how they were going to achieve this outcome, they set out nevertheless.
Negotiating Supports: One families experience Sally Barone
Sally Barone describes how her family worked towards achieving supported living for her daughter, Sarah, after deciding that Sarah’s severe disability, including autism and challenging behaviours should not be a barrier to a decent life.
A place of my own where I belong Anita O’Brien
Anita O’Brien discusses how her son Warren moved from home to a place of his own sharing with house mates. The article explores Anita first seeing “…the possibility of
Warren living in his own home, and having a high degree of influence over the kind of life he wanted – in community, where it all happens.”
Oliver’s Story: team work, resources and innovation turn a life around Margaret Howard
Oliver is a young man with autism who has challenging behaviours. Upon rejection from a group home, his parents and some staff members worked on providing him with a service that was tailored to his needs. Today Oliver lives in his own home and is in part-time employment in a job he enjoys.
A guide to developing personalized residential supports for adults with
developmental disabilities and their families Errol Cocks and Ross Boaden
This guide is based on the important belief that supported living arrangements should be developed around individuals and should be shaped by the needs, preferences and wishes of each person with the appropriate influence of people who are close to, and care about, that person. Six people’s stories of finding their own place to call
home are explored.
Not waiting, creating Carmel Lys
Carmel reflects on helping her son Matt to find a home of his own. Setting up a Circle of Support made up of friends and family (called the “Mattpac”) was a pivotal step to Matt moving into a granny flat attached to the family home and then into his own town house just down the road.
Housesitting for Judy Luke Cowan
Luke tells his story of how housesitting for a family friend gave him the experience of living away from home. After the experience he reflects that “…the sky is the limit. I believe I have the potential to do whatever I want in my life. I will be in my own place one day…”
Not waiting, creating: or in my case not being allowed to wait for every contingency to be coveredDianne Cowan
Dianne, the mother of Luke in the story above, reflects on the importance of setting up a Circle of Support which has assisted her family and Luke in numerous ways including helping Luke to express himself through facilitated communication and enabling Luke to housesit for 6 weeks.
Escaping Mum and Dad and sharing with a housemate! Cameron Skinner
A young man with disability talks about the steps that he took with his family to fulfill his dream of living in his own home.
Cameron’s story: Dreams of my own home turns into reality Maggie Skinner
A mother of a son with disability talks about her son, Cameron’s journey to a happy, independent and meaningful life.
Matthew’s story: Moving into a place of my own
Matthew a young man with disability and his mother Kathie, talk about the journey they took in getting Matthew a home of his own.
Embracing Community Living Katatina Listopad
A mother of two adult children with disability discusses her families experience of community living and how it has transformed the lives for both of her children.
Sam moving into her own house Cathie Rogers
A mother of a daughter with disability talks about the transitions for her daughter to move into her own home and the importance of paid and unpaid support in her daughter’s life.