Centre of his world
Mark welcomes the new Shannon Park
MARK Robinson loves the Geelong Football Club, swimming, going out to lunch at a pub and watching his John Farnham DVD.
The cerebral palsy sufferer, 39, has been able to indulge his pastimes through enduring support from Scope Disability Services for more than two decades.
As a young man, Mr Robinson decided to go to Shannon Park for therapy and he thrived.
He has seen many changes at Scope’s Shannon Park complex and yesterday he helped celebrate the latest chapter in the organisation’s history, with the opening of the redeveloped centre.
It includes a new hydrotherapy pool, individual therapy rooms, sensory rooms, multi- purpose activity rooms, bedrooms with heated floors, landscaped gardens with raised flower beds and general purpose meetings rooms.
‘‘ We know that there is going to be an increase in demand for services under the National Disability InsuranceScheme and this establishes us to meet the needs for people now and into the fu- ture,’’ Scope chief executive Jennifer Fitzgerald said.
‘‘There’s been a paradigm shift in society about what it means for people with a disability to truly be a part of the community and to be equal citizens.’’
Community Services Minister Mary Wooldridge said the centre offered inclusive support services for people with a disability.
‘‘It has been built so that clients go out into the community as well as the community comes i nto the facility," Mrs Wooldridge said.
She said work was continuing in preparing the region for the launch of the NDIS next year, but the push to secure the transition agency for the Barwon region had stagnated.
‘‘ We’ve put a significant amount of money on the table to make that happen and we are pushing very hard for that, but at the moment we are not getting engagement or any commitment from the Federal Government,’’ she said.
‘‘As we are planning for a longer-term scheme, establishing the transition agency where it will be would make a lot of sense.’’
LIFE CHANGING: Mark Robinson at the hydrotherapy pool at the redeveloped Scope’s Shannon Park complex, and Mr Robinson (inset) painting at the centre as a young man.