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Daniel’s story – How the right communication system for Daniel has changed his life (ILC))


Daniel’s coming up for 25 he’s come from
the beginnings of I guess he wasn’t meant to survive past the age of two and
by great luck he went to mainstream schooling in the little school just
across the road from where we’re sitting now That was incredibly pivotal because
it meant that he went to school with typical children and made friends He loves being around people he forms
his own styles of talking to people especially blokes He does love nature he
particularly loves watching birds and being outside We’re sitting in the patio of his home
and he rents it and he lives with his best mate he’s known since year eight, that’s Rhys That isn’t something that I would have
envisaged for his future I met Jo and Dan many years ago and
they’ve used the Independent Living Centre for a range of different things
over their communication journey to find a functional communication system for
Dan Communication is a basic human right we want communication to be accessible
to everybody so just like somebody might receive a wheelchair if they’re unable to walk we want people
to know that there are communication aids and technology out there to enable them
to talk and sometimes people get access to these sorts of communication aids
from very early on maybe during the early intervention
whereas other people might not find the right communication system for them
until they’re much older He has a language system called PODD
for short Pragmatic Organisation Dynamic Display
which is a big mouthful and you know it’s only four years ago that we got
introduced to these but what I love about this is that it gives him the
language and he learns the language as you and I learned when we were at school or prior to going to school We’ve looked at mounting systems so that we can position the communication aids for
Dan on his wheelchair so he has access to them where ever he goes and that’s
where we get our occupational therapists and speech pathologist involved together Jo knows that she can pick up the phone
and contact our technology team at the ILC just to ask any sorts of questions to learn
about new technologies that are available to support Dan’s communication Dan has the opportunity to be able to
trial the technology both in appointments and also accessing our hire service It’s just so important for Dan that he
can trial the technology in his own environment and in a way that he’s
comfortable with His happiness radar for the most part is really high now compared to what it what it used to be and I think that most of that is
around communication Communication is absolutely everything Because he’s got these words this way to express himself by using the symbols in the communication book he can tell us so much more I think part of what the communication
support has led to is him his personality emerging really fully he is
someone who thinks deeply about what he’s offered what the choices could be this is this is just amazing to me The reason I keep going back to the ILC
is because there is such a level of expertise that I can tap into this is a
service that I just hope goes on forever Who knows what the future holds for him
I’ve learnt that I won’t have any limits on it but certainly around communication
it’s all up from here We were told that he would develop to
the intellect of a six-month-old child that’s what we could expect
if he survived This isn’t the intellect of a six month old child this is somebody who
deeply understands social stuff the stuff that’s going on around us and yeah,
it’s amazing

Author Since: Mar 11, 2019

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