Maryborough bloke Ted, 67, has found greater freedom thanks to his decision to access home care services.
Ted is almost completely blind, having dealt with glaucoma since he was a child, but he lives by himself happily in a little Queenslander cottage.
“I used to be able to get around one time but I’ve lost my confidence to do that now,” he said.
A range of home care services are available for older Australians – services that can be accessed with the help of Federal Government funding – including help with housework, personal hygiene, nursing, social activities, transport and much more.
Ted now gets help to do his shopping and other activities, as well as assistance with transport.
Funding available through the government’s My Aged Care agency ranges from the Commonwealth Home Support Program for people with low-level needs, to four levels of Home Care packages, for people with greater care needs.
Care providers such as BlueCare can help guide you through the options and link you with My Aged Care.
Ted has been a client with BlueCare for eight years, having moved to Maryborough from Mossman in north Queensland after his mother died.
“I had family around me up north, and lived on my own most of the time, but then moved in with my mother while she was ill,” he said.
“That was an interesting time of my life … I was losing my sight and she was battling cancer. It wasn’t easy.”
He moved to Maryborough, where BlueCare has helped him remain in his own home and assisted him to build an active, fulfilling life.
There are a couple of keyboards set up in the front room of Ted’s house, revealing his passion for music.
Ted meets up with some fellow musicians every Monday for a jam session, and occasionally performs for the residents in the BlueCare respite centre down the road.
His other interests include computers and technology, and he enjoys regular swimming sessions in the local pool.
BlueCare’s Andrea Habler has been supporting him “since day dot”, and demonstrating that their partnership is not a one-way street she said she has learnt a lot from Ted about computing.
“It’s been a journey,” she chuckled.
Andrea jokes that when they go clothes shopping she tells Ted that everything she gets for him is pink.
“If people saw us out they’d think we were married, the way we bicker,” she said with a twinkle of genuine affection in her eyes.