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Mark: the photographer

It started with Mark taking snaps on his smartphone. Motivated by people’s positive reaction to his pics Mark took his hobby up a notch. He purchased a great camera, engaged a tech specialist, and set about learning the finer points of photography. The outcome of Mark’s hobby is that he produces fantastic images; and he even prints and frames his own work. Mark recently made his first sale… and we now have a beautiful new piece of local art adorning the roundsquared office! As awesome as this is (especially to fussy buyers!), it is just one of Mark’s list of recent achievements. Read on…

Mark: the master of his own life

Early in 2020 an opportunity opened up for Mark to have more say and decision-making power in his own life. Mark was more than ready to run with the changes and a transformation began to take place. Independence was at the forefront.

Mark discussed his interests and goals in depth with his roundsquared consultant giving Mark full say in his life and choices. Mark then worked with his consultant to create a quality support team of his own choosing.  Mark’s team is made up of himself, plus his consultant, team leader, support staff, and family members.  Mark is fortunate that he is part of a close family unit.  Mark says he is very happy with his team and likes them all individually.

Mark’s goals were focussed on developing the skills for running his own home. Mark threw himself into the task of becoming truly independent. Team meetings were had to ensure the whole team work together, with everyone on the same page as to what Mark’s goals were, and how he would achieve them. Mark has worked hard to build his skills with his empowering team alongside him. Mark engaged with therapists, who were great at breaking down tasks into manageable chunks.

Mark now competently manages his own home, with minimal assistance. Mark does his own meal planning, supermarket shopping, cooking, and laundry. Mark also gets to choose his own clothes these days. Mark manages his own financial matters; he has a methodical approach and is a careful record keeper. Mark’s organised style means that he possesses excellent money management skills. All in all, this has been a very steep learning curve for Mark who has shown massive skill development in a short space of time.

Mark is enjoying cooking his meals. He is further developing his cutting skills while increasing the range of meals he can create. Mark found a recipe for beef jerky, one of his favourites, and then made his own; this involved slicing, marinating, and using his air fryer to dehydrate the meat. Apparently, it was very yum and a lot better than what you can buy! Mark enjoys Chinese food and has made beef and black bean, another favourite dish. The perfect sausage roll is next on the list!

Mark keeps himself busy these days with a  weekly schedule including hydrotherapy for exercise and enjoyment, advocacy meetings, local outings and social engagements, and of course running his home. Mark's spare time is often spent working on his photographic art. Mark enjoys daytrips to nearby towns for lunch with his support team.  Trips further afield are a new experience with a recent visit to the war memorial, Questacon and the National Zoo. Additional trips have been planned for Mark to broaden his horizons however Covid got in the way, so these trips have been postponed. Mark would like to explore Jenolan Caves and visit Norman Lindsay’s house when restrictions allow.

One of the wonderful things that are happening for Mark is he is branching out socially. He attends the weekly roundsquared advocacy meetings where attendees really get to have a say. Through this Mark has formed connections with other members that have extended beyond advocacy meetings. Mark has begun to enjoy attending social events with a friend and they were spotted recently enjoying a pizza night with other roundsquared members,

It wasn’t so long ago that Mark had many decisions made for him. He has become a man who is responsible for his choices and decisions in just 18 months!!! All of this would seem to indicate that Mark’s full potential had not been realised up till now. Mark now has more balance and fulfilment in life and is empowered to keep this forward momentum going, and to live his best life. Mark is quietly proud of his achievements, as he should be.

This is what exercising Choice and control in your own life looks like.

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