Imagine creating something so amazing, you had to convince your family and friends that it was really you that did it.
Living with muscular dystrophy can’t be easy but Chay Jeffrey, respite care client, refuses to let it hold him back.
“I focus on what I can do rather than what I can’t do,” said Chay.
At 36 years old, Chay discovered craft five years ago with his carer Mandy.
“I was referred to Ozcare after coming home from hospital, Mandy began coming weekly and that’s when the good times started,” said Chay.
“We had to find something to do,” said Mandy.
“I saw that Chay liked making things so we began doing craft together. We started with a shield and a castle and we kept going from there.”
Five years on, Chay’s room is a shrine to the vast collection of projects he and Mandy have completed.
Walking into Chay’s room is like entering a wonderland with every child’s favourite toy on display. From pirate ships and coastguard boats, to an island complete with a swing bridge and canons, every emergency service vehicle you can think of and a huge castle lovingly finished with a drawbridge and turrets.
The most unbelievable thing about Chay’s creations is that, not only is everything created from scratch, “no kits allowed here”, he also refuses to use glue and paint, favouring every type of sticky tape he can get his hands on.
Mandy said Chay is incredible. “He does all the research for what we are going to make when I am not here,” said Mandy.
“I’ve never been into craft before so it is very challenging, Chay keeps me on my toes.”
Chay said he and Mandy make a great team.
“I’m the ideas person and Mandy is here to help me make it a reality.”
“My friends ask what we’ve been doing and they’re gobsmacked when I show them our creations. I have to convince them I did it – they don’t believe it.”
Mandy said others can learn a lot from Chay.
“He is lots of fun and a pleasure to come to. His wonderful sense of humour keeps him positive. He is keen to learn and never gives up,” said Mandy.
Mandy has even taught Chay to sew and plait.
“He needed these skills to do all the rigging on the ships,” said Mandy.
“I push Chay to his limit; our motto is ‘yes you can!’”
Chay’s story is just one example of how we work with you to tailor care to your interests and needs, exceeding your expectations. Find out more about our respite care services:
Or call us on 1800 Ozcare (1800 692 273).