Talk about strength through adversity.
Ronnie Wiggins displays this each and everyday with a smile on his face and laugh that is infectious.
Ronnie was diagnosed with Huntington's Disease several years ago, and in late 2020, Ronnie transitioned into a New Directions purpose-built supported living home.
Ronnie shares his home with a couple of mates and continues to live his life to the fullest.
Ronnie maintains an active lifestyle within the Wagga Community, spending time with family and friends and trying new things (he recently commenced learning the guitar, he goes alright too).
Last month Ronnie attended a Bunnies game in Sydney with the support of New Directions staff and he had a great evening with the lads.
Ronnie is an avid Rabbitohs supporter and regardless of the challenges he faces every single day, he does not let that stop him supporting his team.
Ronnie is the perfect example of living with disability and overcoming the challenges that come with that.
"Ronnie needs support for lots of day-to-day things, and New Directions is so fortunate to be able to provide that to him," New Directions managing director Ryan Quarmby said.
"But Ronnie lives his own life and doesn't hold back. Enjoying a beer in the evenings, having his family come over for a barbecue, going for a fish at the river, whatever it is Ronnie doesn't let the challenges he faces stop him.
"New Directions is so proud to be able to support Ronnie and all its clients and do so with respect and shared decision making."
New Directions provides support where it is needed and encourage people to continue living their own lives.
New Directions offer a range of support from flexible individual options, supported independent living, specialist disability accommodation, social and community support, behaviour support and support coordination.
For more information contact New Directions on 1300 285 766 or email managing director Ryan Quarmby at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Kurrajong's Employment Preparation team delivers the School Leavers Employment Support (SLES) program to young adults to help them prepare for the workplace, develop job skills and gain independence and confidence.
The SLES course can be accessed by participants using their National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) funding for up to two years after they finish school.
Noah Endean is a friendly and outgoing young man and has been working with Kurrajong's Employment Preparation team for two and a half years. Noah has been described as a role model and real leader who is polite, social and hard-working.
Through Kurrajong's SLES program, Noah has been able to prepare for, and secure, several volunteer work placements.
As a result, he was approached by Council for Intellectual Disability (CID) in Wagga Wagga to become a casual Inclusion Advisor, to provide feedback to the Australian Government around how to be more inclusive of people with disability. Jessica Bennett is another success story who has been part of the Kurrajong Employment Preparation program in Wagga Wagga for the past three years.
During this time, 21-year-old Jessica graduated from the School Leavers Employment Supports (SLES) program and has been supported by Kurrajong in a number of volunteer work placements, before finding her volunteer employment at Jardine's Café. Matt Cunneen from Jardine's Café took Jessica under his wing where he started teaching her all the tools she needed to be successful in the hospitality industry. Jessica is now a paid employee with Jardine's Café.
When asked about why she enjoys working at Jardine's Café Jessica said "I have really enjoyed working in the team environment and coming into work each day to learn something new.
"I have learned everything from washing dishes to serving customers and also prepare food."
For more information on the Employment Preparation Supports and specifically the School Leavers Employment Support Program visit kurrajong.com.au or call 1300 764 620.
Enabling opportunities with the School Leavers Employment Support (SLES) program