Community effort brings new disability accommodation to Ocean Grove

March 8, 2024 BY

Future residents Chris and Andy (front) with members of the Lions Club of Ocean Grove Barwon Heads. Photo: SUPPLIED

THE construction of a new specialist disability home is under way in Ocean Grove.

The accommodation will house four individuals living with a disability and feature technology enhancements such as fall prevention and home automation to improve the liveability of the property for its residents.

It will also include overnight onsite accommodation for a support worker to facilitate 24/7 supported independent living.

Built to Class Three High Physical Support design standards, the property will allow its occupants to live and age in the local community, as well as receive support from disability service provider genU.

Andy, Chris and Ian, who have been living together in a neighbouring property for several years, have been involved in the design of their future home and will welcome another housemate when the development is complete.

“People living with disability need to be able to go about their daily life without having to give thought to what

may impede their access to their community,” genU chief executive Clare Amies said.

“Having access to appropriate housing and supports enables the residents to live within their home and local community with confidence, ease and self-respect.”

Funded by genU and the local Lions Club, the total cost of the build is estimated at $2.345 million, with the Lions Club contributing $600,000 to the project.

The Lions Club of Ocean Grove and Barwon Heads representative Graham Mulroney said the donation was the culmination of the club’s longstanding passion to provide accommodation services for those in need.

The club’s fundraising efforts for the project began in 2011 with a donation from the Corless family.

“Small clubs like ours are very seldom in a position where they can raise that sort of sized sum and then be lucky enough to team up with another organisation which can turn that into a much larger project,” Mr Mulroney said.

“To be able to get to this stage is very exciting and very fulfilling.”

He highlighted the passion and contribution of members of the Lions Club who have passed since the club began its fundraising efforts, including Ed Corless.

“To be able to present this final project with respect to them, that’s very important to us,” Mr Mulroney said.

The new home, which will be operated by genU, is expected to be completed in mid-September.