Jack’s rock of support
IN the past 12 months, Rocky Bay has set the Morgan family up with an electronic speaking device, epilepsy alarm and workshops for the whole family.
The not-for-profit disability service provides speech and occupational therapy for 14-year-old Jack, who has autism, epilepsy, dyspraxia and an intellectual disability.
But parents Steve and Ava and older sister Lucy (18) are not left out.
Steve, who is Jack’s fulltime carer, said the family had completed short courses with Rocky Bay on how to use the devices and had used the respite service.
Jack was diagnosed with dyspraxia at age three, autism a year later and an intellectual disability when he started school.
The epilepsy diagnosis came four years ago and until recently, Jack was sleeping in his parents’ bed.
“Rocky Bay has set us up with an epilepsy alarm for Jack’s room, so we’re just transitioning him out of our bed,” Steve said.
“But it can take a long time to transition.
“Each time he has a seizure, he forgets what he’s learned and things like puberty and tiredness can affect his epilepsy.”
When Community News caught up with the Morgan family, who live in Leeming, they were on their way to pick up an electronic speaking device to replace Jack’s pod books.
“In the morning, if he wants toast, he can just point to the picture… it reduces frustration and behaviour,” Steve said.
With support from the National Disability Insurance Scheme and Rocky Bay services, the family goal is for Jack to move into a shared home and live independently.
Family love: Jack Morgan (centre) with his sister Lucy Morgan (left) and parents Ava and Steve Morgan. Picture: Andrew Ritchie