Having finished her Bachelor of Social Work, Leah is now working as an NDIS supporter in the disability sector.
“It’s something I never thought I would do,” she says. “I never felt really confident in being able to help people and the disability sector is an area that I hadn’t experienced before. But I love it! It has such variety. No case is the same and there’s always a new challenge.”
In her cases, Leah helps clients looking for homes or service providers by connecting them with mainstream support and networks. These networks can include the Office of the Public Guardians and child safety officers, who often assist Leah in her cases as she assists them with theirs. For Leah, a priority in her job is making sure her client feels secure in the help they receive.
“We gather information and bring it to a participant and let them know they have control over this case,” Leah says. “It’s their choice. Whether that choice involves which service provider to choose or if they want to involve certain parties, such as public guardians, it’s their choice to make.
“It can be difficult because you can have an opinion about what they should choose or what you think will be best for them, but at the end of the day you have to let them make their own decision, even if you don’t think it’s something suitable to them.”
With her undergraduate studies finished and now being in a position where she’s achieving her goal of making a difference to people who need it, Leah is proud to be at this point in her journey.
“It wasn’t until I started uni that I realised how social structures and systems affect our lives,” she says. “I realised that for many people, life can get caught in a cycle outside of their control. Empowering people to break that cycle is really important for helping them to look outside of their setting, such as a low socio-economic area, and start seeking a lifestyle that has strong support networks and greater opportunities.”
From having low expectations for her own future to assisting and empowering others to seek better for theirs, Leah’s motivation, education and experience has led her on a path with opportunities that she’s more than ready to embrace.
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