For Matthew, a 33-year old Western Sydney resident living with Down Syndrome, it was about making improvements to his muscle tone and being able to communicate his needs to the friends, family, and carers around him. 

When Matthew came to LiveBig 2 years ago, his Mum Debbie explained that he found it challenging to hold and grip things, making it difficult to pick items up and function to his full ability. In addition, he had limited speech, so she was looking for supports to help Matthew overcome his communication barriers. 

This is when he was assigned his Occupational Therapist and Speech Pathologist from the LiveBig team.

Matthew’s Occupational Therapist Fiona was able to evaluate his needs and select the correct treatment and delivery method, which was centred around fine motor skills. Not long after the initial assessment, he made great progress in building hand strength and his ability to grip had improved phenomenally. Some of the activities Matthew can now complete confidently include making shapes and figures with play-doh, using tongs, tearing and gluing and more.

Together with his speech therapist Cheryl, Matthew established goals within his NDIS therapy plan, which aimed to develop his functional language skills and continuously improve communication. Cheryl assisted Matthew through increasing coordination in his mouth to form words, while also showing alternative communication techniques such as sign language to express his needs and wants.

Collectively, the progress he has made in Occupational Therapy and Speech Therapy has allowed Matthew to become more independent and better care for himself.

We spoke to Matthew’s mother about Matthew’s journey with LiveBig.

“We couldn’t be happier with the service and with our Occupational Therapist and Speech Therapist. Fiona and Cheryl are great at working with Matthew, and even if he tries to be silly, they’re firm with him and support him in getting back on track. He loves his therapists, and LiveBig has been really great for him.

Along with his carers, friends, and family members, I’ve learnt a lot, and everything his therapists set in place we continue with him at home so he can progress. We make sure to do the homework because the results really show.

In the past, we’ve had therapists that haven’t worked out, but the LiveBig team are fantastic.

We’ve had lots of milestones with LiveBig, one in particular is Matthew learning more sign language. Although his achievements may seem little for other people, they’re big for us. All of the small ways his quality of life is improving just makes it all better and impacts us in big ways.

I am so glad we joined LiveBig, and I couldn’t recommend them more”.

Whether you’re celebrating the small wins or the big ones, we know that each milestone makes a difference in the lives of people living with disability that we support. We are here to support you and your loved ones to achieve their goals, big and small.

Contact us today for more information about how we can support your next milestone.