Thursday, February 26, 2009
Holy Grail of Funding
A few years ago, I was in a film called "Independence Unlimited" with my friend Aaron Shelbourne. (You can watch this film on YouTube.) It was a film that compared the life of someone like me, who was fortunate enough to get Direct Funding, to someone like my dear friend Aaron who wasn't as lucky.
In this film, I referred to Direct Funding as the"Holy Grail of Funding". It is. I mean, receiving any kind of government funding is difficult (that's why I had to wait 6 months to get my commode!) But Direct Funding is extremely difficult for people to get. And that's not fair! Other types of funding are for assistive devices (wheelchairs, walkers, voice output computers etc), and, sure, these things are important, but, to my way of thinking, Direct Funding is even more so.
I remember before I had Direct Funding, my life was terrible. The first place I lived in was an apartment in Thornhill. The apartment building had 24-7 on-site attendant care. I communicate by spelling out words and phrases; most of these attendants had mild to difficult spelling/reading limitations. I was so frustrated! I suggested to the manager that maybe I could get the few attendants who had no trouble communicating with me to do my bookings. The manager said, no, it wasn't possible. I'd have to take whoever came to me. No matter how difficult it was for me or how I felt.
I could write a very long list about what happened to me at the hands of attendants (both in Thornhill and in Toronto), but I will simply say that I have been on Lorasepam for 7 years now because I can neither forget nor forgive those who hurt me, not just physically but emotionally.
On January 27th, 2009, it was my 3rd year anniversary of having Direct Funding and be able to hire my own attendants. It was the best thing I ever did! I'm 100% happier than I used to be!
The people I've hired are all fantastic! They want to assist me; no request is too much for them. They like and respect me, and I return the sentiment.
It is my fervent hope that one day that Aaron and people like him, who are in the same bad place that I used to be in, will get Direct Funding and gain control over their lives.
Please go to http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Hl6HpdYwryQ to see "Independence Unlimited".