Hi, my name is Mel. I have cerebral palsy, otherwise known as CP. My parents have always said that I should never let my disability be the reason for not living life to the full. So, I like to travel, spend time with friends, volunteer and engage in paid disability awareness work, just to name a few things.
When I was little, my parents strived to create a ‘normal’ life for me regardless of my disability. The legacy of their efforts has been that I have expectations of myself to be someone who contributes meaningfully to the society that I live in.
I currently do disability awareness presentations for organisations. I also mentor a person with mental health challenges and have welfare based qualifications, which I will have the opportunity to further at uni in the near future.
My love of travel has also seen me be able to enjoy the ballet of Sleeping Beauty at Covent Garden in London in October 2011. A real highlight for me.
My support needs are significant, meaning that I need the assistance of a family member or support worker to complete most tasks of daily living.
‘Pity parties’ sometimes happen to me, just like they do to anyone, but mostly I focus on my passion which is creating a world of more opportunity for choice, dignity and the ‘good life’ for people who have a disability.
When I started using a self-managed funding support option in November 2009, I got a true sense of what freedom actually can mean for someone who has a disability.
Having direct contact with workers, as I do, allows more flexibility for me which enables more fluidity in my community participation, and makes me feel that I’m not defined by my disability.
My hope is that through reading my blog entries, you will gain more insight into what it is like to live with a disability. You might also be motivated to consider getting a job in the disability sector or to just simply understand disability from a first-hand perspective.
carecareers plays an integral part in supporting people with a disability to access support workers and other professionals in the sector, who see the people they are providing assistance to as valuable contributing members of the community.
I hope that you will find my blog posts informative, perception-challenging and enjoyable.
I’ll be at the Sydney rally today too for the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS). It’s an important step to make the NDIS a reality. I hope to see you there.