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In my shoes.
Recently we sat down with Lynn Rayner, the devoted and loving mother of 21 year old Kate Rayner who lives with down syndrome and attends scosa’s Elizabeth Park Hub.
Here’s what Lynn had to say about her life as a parent of a child living with a disability.
Q: Tell us a little bit about Kate
A: Kate is 21 years of age and lives with down syndrome. She loves garlic prawns, Barbie Dolls and watching YouTube. Kate lives with me at home in Salisbury and currently attends the scosa Elizabeth Park Hub on a regular basis. Although we are part of a big family, my husband recently passed away so it’s just me and my Kate who live together at home. I am unable to drive, however we live within walking distance to a shopping centre which is very convenient for us.
Q:How did you find out about scosa?
A: Before scosa, Kate attended Roma Mitchell High School, and fortunately she found the transition to scosa very easy. She has a big personality and she really loves coming to scosa.
Towards the end of year 12, Kate’s high school showed us around many places including scosa. As part of this, we received a tour of the Elizabeth Park Hub and we really liked it. The atmosphere, the personal service and warm welcome was really inviting. It was a very pleasant environment to be in and this made our decision very easy!
Q: What does Kate enjoy most about coming to scosa?
A: Kate loves participating in dance therapy, cooking, art and craft, pub lunches and of course, shopping! She often tells me she feels happy when she comes to scosa and that it is her ‘happy place’. Kate also has a tendency to really worry about things, so not only is she having fun and learning new skills, scosa is also helping to take her mind away from her stresses and worries.
Q: What is most important to you for Kate’s life?
A: Just like any parent, Kate’s happiness is the most important thing to me. You learn when having a child with a disability not to have any expectations. You learn to live day by day and accept them just the way they are and I want nothing but the best for my child.
It’s also important to me that Kate is happy and interacting with other people outside of the house and not just sitting in her room. For her mental well being, it’s important that she is stimulated and that her mind is kept active.
Attending scosa means that Kate is interacting with other people while still learning new things. Last year she had the opportunity to participate in the Tri State Games (a national athletics carnival). It was really fantastic to hear about her races and how proud she was to be part of her own sporting team, the scosa Scorpions.
Kate has also been selected to participate in scosa’s leadership program which teaches her about topics like the importance of communication, public speaking while also introducing her to new workplace experiences. She is really enjoying being a part of this program and I am looking forward to watching her continue to develop and grow at scosa.
As a parent, scosa helps to give me a break as well. Kate is not a difficult child, but juggling life’s pressures can sometimes be challenging so it also allows me the time to do other things and care for other family members as well. It really provides both myself and Kate with invaluable respite.
As a parent of a child with a disability, I invite you to consider making a tax deductible donation to scosa.
Not only are the services and programs vital for people living with disabilities, like Kate, scosa also provides much needed support to parents and the entire family. scosa enables parents of people with disabilities to work and earn an income, provide care and support to other family members and above all, scosa also provides parents with respite and time for self-care, which is so important in enabling us to be the best version of ourselves for our children.
We invite you to make a tax deductible donation to support our life changing services at scosa.