It certainly talks a good talk and I'm sure for many, especially those living with a physical disability, learning difficulties and autism, it seems like a fantastic scheme to offer support and care plans 'for a brighter future' with funding implemented to offer care and support and to assist in finding employment, training and various lifestyle programs for those in need of a little extra support.
I just love this and I absolutely support this.
I love that 97% of those with cerebral palsy who apply are accessing the scheme. But interestingly, only 84% of those who apply with severe mental health issues are accepted.
And further to this, 690,000 are said to suffer from severe mental health issues in Australia, although the total number of Australians to access the NDIS Scheme in its entirety is 64,000.
I'll just give you a moment to really absorb the above figures...
To start, I am not educated on this scheme in any way, although I am making a commitment to learn as much as I can about the reality of what is in my opinion a crumbling and decrepit mental health system that always has been terribly flawed.
It's occurring behind closed doors and unless you're personally involved (AND EVEN WHEN YOU ARE) it's damn near impossible to really get a clear picture of what is actually going on.
And speaking of behind closed doors...the Health Minister has always suggested NDIS as being:
"complimentary to existing systems and are not intended to replace them".
I find this statement interesting considering various long running mental institutions are in the process of closing.
NDIS IS REPLACING the existing mental health system and I had this confirmed today...a major component of this roll out is:
'the deinstitutionalisation of long term and chronically mentally ill patients'.
So, today I attended to a meeting with a room full of people to discuss Michael, my brother, who suffers from chronic schizophrenia and the motivation behind my I AM LOVE [d] project.
For Michael, truthfully I'd say he may be one of the 'lucky' ones as I'm not about to let him fall through the cracks and become lost and forgotten. I will stand up and fight for his rights to receive ongoing support, care and attention and he will get this to the level we need to ensure his long-term safety.
What seriously concerns me, however, are those who do not have adequate family support to stand up for them, to ensure they're properly taken care of.
And today, I began the process of becoming Michael's legal guardian and within 3- 6 months, he will be released.
I am sharing about this as for the most part it's swept under the stigmatic rug of 'things we deal with in silence'.
Mental Health Awareness and Governmental Support is a social issue that we as a community need to at least be educated on.
I am sharing as I want you to at least refrain from judgement when you pass a homeless person or someone who is suffering from mental illness.
Remember these people ARE people, they deserve our love and compassion.
They deserve to feel safe, warm and get fed.
They are someone's son or daughter, brother, sister, father or mother.
This is the first post of what I feel will be many as the journey I AM embarking on is one that needs to be shared.
We are One and together we can make a difference in this world.
Love Lee xxx