Quyen Diep, pronounced Queen, one of CatholicCare’s valued NDIS Support Coordinators, applies her knowledge and skills to assist 19-year-old Stanley, who was diagnosed with Down Syndrome when he was born. The nature of this diagnosis creates challenges in many areas of his life, such as relationship building, education, inclusion, employment, and future planning.
Stanley’s carer is his mum, whose first language is Cantonese. It was vital for her to connect with a service provider with whom she could easily communicate and build a rapport. Quyen was able to fill this need, being fluent in Cantonese herself.
Quyen knows that the support she provides is crucial to the success of Stanley’s life, along with the services he depends on such as Speech and Occupational Therapy for independence in functions such as eating, swallowing, and communicating with his friends and loved ones.
More than a planner, a Support Coordinator makes sure that all service agreements between the family and providers they engage with are fair and in line with NDIS standards and policies. Retaining an experienced and caring Support Coordinator also ensures that a participant such as Stanley has an advocate through complex plan reviews and when requesting an extension of his funds. A Support Coordinator is also able to give assistance to family members with behavioral strategies and resolving issues relating to care and safety.
For Stanley and his family, having Quyen as part of their support team means there is another person to lighten the load and depend on, making his world and theirs, the best it can be.
Quyen says of her support role, “I love what I do for Stanley, I can see that he is more confident in making decisions, and I love to see Stanley achieving the goals that we have set as a team and to witness his inclusion out in the community.”
CatholicCare also offer Life Skills and Work Training through Centacare, based at Belmore, now in its 30th year of operation.
Participants can access Centacare programs through their NDIS plan and take advantage of both the learning and social aspects of the centre through cooking and dance classes, day trips, breakfast and coffee clubs, including how to run your own café, and they will soon also have access to certified training courses. In addition, there may be the option to join CatholicCare’s team of Supported Employees who provide gardening and cleaning services across Sydney and there is even a special program for School Leavers to help them become work ready.