More people with disabilities on the Darling Downs will now have access to appropriate housing with a purpose-built accommodation complex being officially opened today.
The single-storey complex, located in Centenary Heights, includes four fully customised units built by Enabled Living and designed with disability-friendly features including wide entrances, flat surfaces, low benches and wheelchair accessible bathrooms.
One of the three-bedroom units is owned and managed by local community organisation YellowBridge QLD after they received a $450,000 donation from Hand Heart Pocket the Charity of Freemasons Queensland to purchase the unit.
YellowBridge QLD Chief Executive Officer Penny Hamilton said it was exciting to finally see some of their clients being able to move into their own place where it is more suitable for someone their age and abilities.
“We are in the midst of a disability housing crisis on the Darling Downs, where people with disabilities, who are young and want to live independently or those with ageing parents, have no-where to go,” Penny said.
“We know of 40 people in this position. While many have the means to buy or rent their own place, there is simply no suitable housing for them in the region.
“A few will never have the means to pay for a place to live.
“Having access to appropriate housing is an important part of the equation for improving the overall quality of life of people with disabilities.”
Hand Heart Pocket Chief Executive Officer, Gary Mark, said the local Freemasons were vocal supporters of YellowBridge QLD, due to its proven record of supporting more than 5,000 people in the local region to lead more meaningful and connected lives each year.
“Our purpose is to provide sustainable support that delivers positive outcomes; to provide a hand up to communities, charities and individuals that have limited access to other funding sources,” Mr Mark said.
“Alleviating the stress on people like Cathy through the provision of innovative purpose-built housing aligns with our values of equipping people to lead better lives,” he said.
“We are delighted to have partnered with YellowBridge QLD on this important initiative and know it will be a catalyst for changing the landscape of disability housing in the region.”