“OnSide helps to guide me.”
Paul is lucky to be alive. As a super fit, 34 year professional, Paul showed none of the warning signs of someone likely to suffer a traumatic brain injury. In an instant, his whole world changed when he suffered a major stroke. Paul was in a coma for two weeks and endured four brain surgeries. Against all odds, he managed to wake up from his coma, only to find that the fight had just begun.
Over the last five years, Paul has worked hard, relearning how to walk, talk, read, write, bathe, swim and drive. As a husband and father of two young boys, Paul’s goals are centered around his family.
Paul had little knowledge of the disability sector—he had no reason to engage with it prior to his stroke. Without notice, Paul found himself in hospital with a newly acquired disability and just wanted to get home, back into his community. Paul was able to approach OnSide and tap into its NDIS expertise.
“The NDIS is very tricky,” Paul explains. “With my stroke, I struggle with too much information. OnSide was able to break everything down for me and tell me exactly what I needed to know to navigate everything.”
“The NDIS has changed our life now,” Paul’s wife Lauren explains. “The NDIS itself is fantastic but only when you can access it. OnSide supported us to prepare our NDIS plan. They really went above and beyond. Our Support Coordinator made sure that we could understand the system and things weren’t forgotten.”
Navigating the Unknown
“Although we chose to self-manage our funding, it’s really difficult to think about budgeting and prioritise everything. They helped us navigate all of that,” Lauren says.
“OnSide helps to guide me,” Paul tells us about his choice to self-manage funding. “My Support Coordinator explains everything and then I am able to choose my own therapists.” At first being self-managed was challenging. “OnSide walked alongside me as I needed the confidence to take each step. OnSide has built my strength and ability to do things in the NDIS which I couldn’t do at the start. They keep telling me that soon I won’t even need them!”
“Whenever we have a question we know we can call our Support Coordinator. They are always available and we’ve never had a wait time,” Lauren says.
Paul recently prepared for a NDIS review with OnSide’s assistance. “There is always someone there for us. No matter how many phone calls we make or how many questions we ask there is always someone happy to help,” Lauren says.
“Because the NDIS is so new the landscape is forever changing. With OnSide we know we have experts who understand all the ins and outs of everything. They really care. I would recommend them for everyone,” she adds.
“You want to know that you’re going to the right place and the fact that OnSide is independent is vital. Sadly, in the disability sector there are people that can take advantage,” Paul says.
“With OnSide, we know that they are there for us and to maximise the opportunities for Paul. Having that trust in them is really important,” Lauren adds.
Paul is passionate about making a difference and inspiring others. OnSide continues to work with Paul to breakdown his goals and connect him with services to provide the social, community and engaging support he didn’t even know existed. You can check out his website where he shares his progress here.