Presentation on theme: "Moving Out of Home Karleigh Jones. Journey began in 2010 Most of friends from school were leaving home – attending universities around the country My."— Presentation transcript:
Moving Out of Home Karleigh Jones
Journey began in 2010 Most of friends from school were leaving home – attending universities around the country My family and I started connecting with organizations such as Tauranga Community Housing Trust – helps people with disabilities into suitable housing
All the planning came to fruition in 2011 Two flatmates with disabilities Bills like rent and power paid automatically. Water paid when I was downtown. Place was central to bus stop, doctors and nearby shopping centre Had supports, both formal and informal
Formal supports included support workers who helped me do things like shopping, cleaning, cooking and going out to the things I needed to go to. Informal supports, aka my parents, helped by taking me to places I would not get to otherwise, advocating, answering any questions and letting me stay at their place when I needed a break.
Flatmates were people I clicked with and hung out with on numerous occasions. Felt that they would understand me and I felt ready to live away from my family with them. They were nice to me and seemed respectful.
Had a look at this house in Tauranga South Suited the needs of everyone – nice, quiet, central and wheelchair accessible Then had to fill out paperwork to apply to live in this house – had to wait for the letting agent to do what they had to do which included reference checks and credit checks – the hardest part
Once we found out we got the place, we had meetings to sort out stuff such as the tenancy agreement, power and who was bringing what. I had a lot of stuff as instead of getting other things for my birthday, I asked to get stuff that can be used in a flat. Tauranga Community Housing Trust staff helped me with the process and made sure I understood things
Things went well but with the highs came the lows. Began having issues with my flatmates as they did not understand me as much as I thought. Felt cut off and isolated as they did things as if I didn’t live there as well
Communication was a big problem in the flat I would let my flatmates know when I was going out, when I was not going to be home for tea and when I had guests around. My flatmates didn’t do the same things Lead me to some awkward situations where I was forced into socialising that made me feel uncomfortable I felt like I wasn’t listened to which is very important in any living situation especially flatting
One day after Roller Derby training, I had left my gear outside to air out and was going to put it away in the morning. About 4pm the next morning, I could hear it was raining outside and started to freak out as I thought my gear was outside I rushed outside and it wasn’t there – went back inside and gear was in the shoebox. One of my flatmates moved it and didn’t tell me. Felt really stupid after that as I thought I could have woken them up rushing to get my gear.
Another thing that was due to communication issues was that one day I made something in the slow cooker then went out. When I got home, I was told by one of my flatmates that they didn’t have dinner because they didn’t know whether they could eat it before I got home. – I had left a note saying they could help themselves. I am surprised I never got asked by my flatmates about what’s going on with dinner
Another reason I struggled was that my flatmates had different expectations to me and that sometimes caused friction. I had complaints from my flatmates that I wasn’t socialising with them. Between polytech classes, St John Youth, swimming, SPCA volunteering, Roller Derby training and hanging out with others I would spend around 24 hours a week socialising. Needed time for myself to wind down and relax and I would go into my room because I could have that time without being a nuisance.
Also had to listen to the Justin Bieber movie so many times as my flatmate would play it on the DVD player even though she had a laptop that can play DVDs When I watched a DVD, I would watch it on my laptop in my room and I tried nicely to ask her to watch it on hers in her room but she wouldn’t Got sick and tired of Justin Bieber’s music after that even though he has some good songs.
They also requested I did things in a particular way. For example, one day I made a pot of vegetable soup. When I make it, I boil some bacon bones, remove them and keep the meat on in case I get hungry later. One of the flat mates told me to put the meat in the soup. I don’t like being told how to make my soup unless it is my mother doing the telling. I have been taught a particular way and I feel comfortable doing it. Also told to do potatoes with the stews I would always do on Wednesdays – did not have time to do potatoes and would always stick in some form of vegetables
Hardest part of the situation was when my flatmates started going out together When it first happened I was against it – change the whole dynamic of the flat Always felt cast aside and like I didn’t live there. Could not tell them to stop doing things that annoyed me – as they would stick up for each other.
Would get yelled at and told I was ‘the bad one’. They accused me of not paying for things when I have Could not cope with their behaviour – snarky and negative I would stay in town after class just so I could have time away
Flatmates would also change the rules to suit them. At first we would get groceries for the flat. Went away to my parents place – get tense and edgy and didn’t want to take it out on the flatmates Came back to find out they had changed it to buy-your-own without my knowledge or approval. Their reason was they didn’t want to stress me out during exams. I felt angry that I was left out of the decision
Was a mental shipwreck as a result of the constant bullying Felt there was no point of me carrying on with anything. Moved back in with my family as there was no way I would be able to keep going the way I was. Needed counselling Tried boarding somewhere else which didn’t work out either
Learnt some really cool skills that help me even now Advocate for myself, navigating the Tauranga ‘Bay Hopper’ bus system and being able to pay those annoying but important bills Learnt about tenancy agreements and the process involved in finding a suitable place to live in Gotten some useful information about what tools work for me and what things need to be put into place when I go flatting again in the future
Was in the flat for nine months Encouraged to cook some new things on my own such as pizzas, macaroni cheese, rissoles and soup. These turned out well and were enjoyed by all I know with the right supports, I will be able to live by myself and do so really well
Tips from my Journey Start planning as soon as possible – was a few months after I expressed my interest that I actually moved into the flat. Lot to organise including flatmates, choosing a suitable place, getting supports put in and waiting to hear about the suitable place. Keeping in touch with my parents – Was able to talk to them and get help on issues from the bullying, to other matters such as getting injured, wanting to know how to make things such as my favourite gravy and to getting transport to places when the buses weren’t available.
Getting the stuff I needed wasn’t too expensive. I was able to take some stuff that my parents had but didn’t need. Also asked people for Christmas and my birthday to give me things I could use in a flat. Specials helped too. Glad to have someone explain to me about tenancy. The process can be confusing for anyone let alone someone like me. First time I heard terms such as ‘bond’, ‘fixed term tenancy’ and ’periodic tenancy’. Also given a booklet from the Department of Building and Housing that explained things and provided a glossary of terms used which is available on their website (www.dbh.govt.nz/renting-and-you)www.dbh.govt.nz/renting-and-you