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Raymond - Doing what I need to and want to, for my own wellbeing

I’m no longer held back from doing what I want and need to, by mental health issues, and to be honest I don’t believe I’d have made it to where I am in my life now if it wasn’t for Flourish Australia. 

It’s required some adjusting to get back into the workforce after taking some time out to care for my son who has a disability and being connected with Flourish Australia by a social worker has been life changing. With the support of a Disability Employment Service I found work as a kitchenhand which can be tiring, so I’m sure to rest when I get home and I’ve set my sights on something better for my future.

My son is now 19 and has support workers to help him with his needs, through the NDIS. He’s making his own way in the world and I’m working toward what I want for my life.

To improve my skills, I can access a free course each year with the Disability Support Pension. As a result of successfully completing a Food Safety Certificate through Flourish Australia’s Connector Hub program, I feel I could now handle returning to study.

Though I’ve experienced a few hospital admissions over the years, my mental health recovery is going really well. I’m dedicated to my vision of living independently in my community and have kicked some life goals in the past 12 months by just getting up every single morning and doing what needs to be done. I’ve been able to maintain a home of my own and cover my living costs, and I’ve signed up for NDIS funding so that I can seek the support of a psychologist to sort out a few things.

I’ve greatly enjoyed taking part in a number of activities with Flourish Australia’s Flowerdale Cottage service at Liverpool. Colouring and painting with the art group is great for occupying my mind with something outside of myself, while the Men’s Group has helped me gain an awareness of myself including my needs and drives as a guy. 

I particularly enjoy lending a hand with the BBQ’s which I see as a great opportunity to spend time with other people. I’ve made a lot of new friends this way. 

Since separating from my partner, I find living well is more attainable when I’m working to supplement my Disability Support Pension. It’s not so much that I need to do it, I wanted to do it!  Having meaningful employment is an important factor of wellbeing for me.

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