A PLACE TO CALL HOME: Geoff and Ingrid Blake in the new apartment Ingrid will move into next month.
A PLACE TO CALL HOME: Geoff and Ingrid Blake in the new apartment Ingrid will move into next month. Jack Harlem Photography'

MS suffer gets a place to call home

A LIFE changing development in Springfield will give 18 people with progressive neurological diseases a new home this May and June.

Multiple sclerosis sufferer Ingrid Blake is moving in on June 4.

Her husband Geoff has found an apartment about 700 metres down the road which means the couple can easily spend time together.

"I'm excited, looking forward to it. I get my own kitchen, bedroom, lounge, patio, washing machine and dryer," she told the QT.

"I get my independence again and my own space."

Mrs Blake was diagnosed with MS at 26 and now aged 56 she has the chance to live independently again while still having the support of 24/7 care available.

After her diagnosis her husband worked hard to try and hold onto a normal life for the couple, but four years ago she had to move into a shared living facility in Brisbane.

"I've had my moments and times that were difficult, but I soldier on, I've had very good doctors."

Mrs Blake said she was on a slow decline now but she could still do a lot for herself.

She just needs help getting in and out of the shower and in and out of bed.

While Mr Blake, who has been living on his own in a neighbouring suburb, visits frequently it has been hard for them to spend quiet time together due to the communal living situation.

But all that's about to change thanks to MS Queensland's Project Dignity 120 Mrs Blake will once again have her own space.

 

She is looking forward to being able to wheel her chair up to the kitchen bench and make herself a cup of tea or watch her favourite television show.

Mr Blake will even be able to stay over as there's room for a single bed in the study.

CEO of MS Queensland Lincoln Hopper said Project Dignity 120 was MS Queensland's solution to a lack of suitable care for people with progressive neurological diseases, such as multiple sclerosis (MS).

"There is a housing crisis in Queensland and finding age appropriate high care housing for people living with MS and other progressive neurological diseases is extremely difficult. Many people have little choice but to move into aged-care accommodation as a last resort," Mr Hopper said.

"Creating housing for people living with MS and other progressive neurological diseases is so important to us and with our Project Dignity 120 initiative taking off, we are excited for what the future holds.

"We are committed to building homes that meet our customer's expectations. Understanding what people with MS really need and with our mission of restoring dignity, we are creating amazing homes that are genuinely inviting, modern, bright but a practical place to call home," he said.

In Queensland, 1340 people with a disability under the age of 65 are living in resident aged care.

Most of the residents moving into the Springfield facility will be aged in their 40s and 50s.

MS Queensland has committed to raise awareness and funds to build 120 new high need independent living apartments across 10 locations in Queensland, the Springfield Apartments are the very first of many. 

Other locations include Cairns, Townsville, Mackay, Rockhampton, Bundaberg, Sunshine Coast, Toowoomba, Gold Coast and Brisbane.

What is Project 120?

SPRINGFIELD'S Health City is the first site in the roll-out of MS Queensland's Project Dignity 120, which involves building a total of 120 new high-need independent living apartments across Queensland.

Construction has now finished on the 18 apartments with finishing touches being applied now ahead of residents moving in from May 28.

Residents will be able to make the apartments their own and live independently with the support of 24/7 care.

MS Queensland's Project Dignity 120 apartments will all meet Liveable Housing Australia's Platinum Standard.

This means the Project Dignity 120 Specialist Disability Accommodation will be fully accessible with high levels of support for residents.

Each apartment will be built to the highest safety and mobility standards, and fitted for adaptive high care needs and changing disease symptoms, with accessible bedrooms, bathrooms and kitchen facilities.

Each apartment features a patio, washing machine and dryer as well as a small study.

On site is a communal gym and BBQ facilities.



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