Charlie’s Story

When SUFY first met Charlie he was residing in an emergency accommodation facility. Isolated from his community and informal networks Charlie had limited say over the direction his life took. After a prolonged period of sickness and an extended stay in hospital the Public Guardian had been appointed for all personal matters. They had made the decision that upon discharge from hospital Charlie would move to a short term emergency accommodation facility. Even though this facility was extremely inappropriate for Charlie and did not meet his needs it had been identified that there were no alternative options available for him.

Charlie was of the understanding that his stay in this facility would only be for a few months until Disability Services and the Public Guardian sourced long term suitable accommodation. However as the months went by and no option was identified for Charlie his frustration built. After years of sickness and seclusion Charlie was ready to get back into the community and move on with his life.

Eventually Charlie was asked to leave the emergency accommodation facility. The relationship between him and the service provider had broken down. At this time Charlie was given 2 options. Move into a block funded co-tenancy arrangement with 2 other individuals with extremely high support needs or return to the family home with minimal formal supports in place. Both options were inappropriate and unsuitable for Charlies but he was told there were no alternative options.

SUFY felt Charlie had the capacity to make his own decisions if given sufficient support and time. SUFY worked with Charlie and relevant stakeholders to ensure Charlie had all the correct and necessary information he required about both options. This allowed for genuine and extensive consultation to be had with Charlie prior to the Public Guardian making the final decision. The outcome was Charlie would return home with minimal formal support in place.

SUFY continued to advocate for Charlie’s fundamental needs to be met

  • appropriate, accessible, affordable housing
  • sufficient individual funding to meet Charlie’s support needs
  • support provided by a respectful and flexible service provider who understood Charlie’s support needs
  • Charlie having control back over his life and no longer having the Public Guardian appointed for all personal matters.

The outcome of SUFY’s advocacy was, Charlie now makes all his own decisions as the appointment of the Public Guardian was removed. He has his own affordable, accessible unit in the community and individual recurrent funding. Charlie’s support is provided by a service provider he decided upon who he has a good relationship with.

Note: Names have been changed.

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