I’m the mother of 3 beautiful intelligent girls, Morgan 24, Bree 21 and Sophie 18. Morgan was born with Jacobsens Syndrome which displays as a moderate to severe learning delay. As the mother of a young adult with special needs, I want every possible opportunity for her to develop skills and gain knowledge associated with daily life. For young adults that don’t have the ability or haven’t yet acquired the skills to gain employment when they leave school, the main option is your typical disability day program. Morgan is in this category. Over a few years it became very clear our Morgan deserved more. Was there even a place where happy humans could hang out and thrive in a unique environment?
After finishing school Morgan was enrolled in a Disability Support Day Program 5 days per week 6 hours a day. After a few months I noticed that there were very few activities offered in Morgan’s supports schedule that were targeting Morgan’s individual goals and interests.
Meetings and phone discussions were becoming more regular regarding Morgan’s goals and the level of care given around supporting her needs. The major turning point came when Morgan started returning home from her day program regularly upset and frustrated. Her demeanour went from always singing, happy and chatty to being visibly upset and cranky.
The reality of the situation finally became evident, when after nearly 3 years of discussions with the day support program, all it resulted in was seemingly unproductive use of NDIS funding. It was apparent that the support centre believed walking around shopping centres and going bowling, or to the movies was meeting Morgan’s individual goals.
The excuse I was given for not providing individual supports targeting Morgan’s goals and interests, regardless of her 1:1 funding came from Morgan’s Team Leader.
“HE HAD OVER 40 CLIENTS TO TRY AND COORDINATE ACTIVITIES FOR AND NOT ENOUGH TIME, OR THE STAFF, TO BE ABLE TO PROVIDE INDIVIDUAL 1:1 SUPPORTS AND ACTIVITIES AIMED TOWARDS MORGAN’S INDIVIDUAL NEEDS.”
Like me, most parents will visit day support centres in their local area before making the important decision on which support service to send their “child” to. The hard reality is that most Disability Support Providers I visited had basic group programs which were easily maintained and structured to facilitate higher numbers of participants.
Activities usually included trips to shopping centres for lunch, going to the movies, bowling etc. When cooking classes were provided, the support worker cooked for the participant with very little interaction on their part. The food was not specific to the individuals dietary or sensory needs or tastes and was catered for on a “group” basis. You have to ask yourself, “How does that benefit the participant achieving their individual goals?” Something needed to change.
So, I employed a support worker for Morgan, around similar age, who was outgoing, enthusiastic, up to date with technology. The support worker also shared an interest of games, music and activities. I created or found programs and activities that continued to provide basic subject criteria based on Morgan’s capabilities. These incorporated technology learning programs with the use of her iPad.
After a short time, Morgan began to not only excel in her reading, speech, maths and money skills, she also was happy to engage in outdoor activities and social participation. Morgan was happy and enjoyed learning as it was incorporated into fun activities. She was learning without even realising it.
With the excitement and accomplishment of Morgan’s goals being met, I started to think how other kids could benefit from programs like the one I had provided for Morgan.
So, I bravely took out a second mortgage on my home and purchased a property. A place where I could provide a hub for kids to learn and have fun. The Happy Human Hub, “Where happy humans hang out”.
My fiancé Brad and I spent hours upon hours and many late nights, renovating and decorating the space. We’re very proud of what we’ve created and we can share with our local community.
Happiness at the Hub
Our facilities have dedicated rooms to assist with creating individual programs. We have a sensory room, media & gaming room, edu-tainment room, salon, arts and crafts room, full kitchen and laundry facilities.
We’re so excited to finally open our doors and share what we’ve created.
Any of the individual rooms can be booked for use throughout the week with support from your own support worker, or ours. You can book support with our dedicated support staff.
Our team at The Happy Human Hub have found that participants who choose to include edu-tainment games and programs integrated into their daily program, are continuing to show improved development in speech and communication, physical, tactile, gross and fine motor skills.
We have chosen ‘fun, interactive’ ways to support continuous learning in all aspects of the participant’s plan. These include physical activities, improved independence, non-stop knowledge subjects, community access, and social activities.
Our mission is to build an environment for connection and support for kids from 7+ years of age. The Social Connection Club programs are designed to reinforce their confidence, support their independence and prepare them for daily life. This will provide life skills in readiness for their personal growth into teenagers and young adults.
- Assisted Personal Transport & Travel
- Book our dedicated spaces
- Social Connection Club 7 years+
- Group & Centre Based Activities (School Leavers / Young adults)
- School Leavers Transition to Supports
- Individual Support Program
- Development of Daily Living & Life Skills
- Social Economic & Community Participation
- Meet Play Chat Parent Support Group
- Support Coordination
The benefits are many, including the development of social skills and interaction, building confidence, improved problem-solving skills, encouraging teamwork, improved fine and gross motor skills as well as skill development.
Hub mission & vision
To provide reassurance to parents & carers while transitioning their kids from the security and familiarities of school life. To continue to support them as they begin to navigate daily life and community participation as teens and young adults. We’ll travel through this stage together!
Our vision is to create an all-inclusive environment for our young disability community. To connect them with their peers, have fun, grow, relax, learn, hangout and thrive. The integration of therapies, work program initiatives, and social groups at the Happy Human Hub reinforces our vision of creating a NEW concept full inclusion, culture club!
The Happy Human Hub | Where happy humans hang out!
Michelle McLeod – Managing Director
Phone: 4965 8554