Meet Grahame, one of our Transition Support Workers helping people to apply for National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) funding as the Personal Helpers and Mentors (PHaMs) program phases out.
Grahame has been with the Open Minds Capalaba team for three and a half years; his passion for mental health developed after he volunteered as a Lifeline telephone counsellor for a year.
Grahame holds a Diploma in Youth Work and a Certificate IV in Alcohol and Other Drugs.
He has also worked in various Case Management roles, working with young people with complex needs, homelessness, family support, and mental health.
When Grahame worked with the PHaMs team at Open Minds, he provided practical assistance for people living with mental illness, to help them overcome social isolation and increase their connection to the community.
The government announced earlier this year this it would be phasing out the PHaMs program.
Grahame’s latest role since July 2019 has been as a Transition Support Worker, and involves assisting people who previously accessed PHaMs through Open Minds to access alternate support options.
These options include:
- A National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) funding plan
- Other organisations that are funded for Continuity of Support (CoS) or the National Psychosocial Support (Open Minds is funded for NPS on the Sunshine Coast)
- Queensland Health Funded NGO individual and group recovery programs
Grahame helps to guide Open Minds participants through the NDIS eligibility assessment process, which is not a simple task.
His role involves advocating for clients through the process, by communicating and connecting with their GPs and psychiatrists, and providing letters of support where necessary.
Grahame said: “The best part of my job is seeing the expression of hope when people are told they’ve been approved for the NDIS.
“Knowing we make a difference to people’s lives is something really special.
“I thoroughly enjoy working with my participants, managers and co-workers, as it’s such a diverse group of people.”
Interested in finding out about a career with Open Minds as a Support Worker? Find out more here.