27 January 2018

Dunellan Lodge support BestLife Foundation

Families with young children with disabilities on many occasions struggle to cope with the constant care that is required to support the child in their everyday living. The child can become lonely and bored while the family becomes exhausted and despondent.

BestLife Foundation makes it possible for children with disabilities to build a more independent future. With the support of BestLife they can make friends, build networks and become more independent, benefiting from opportunities to be away from home.

A high level of organisation is required and specialised care essential to achieve the desired outcomes. Understandably, it is expensive.

BestLife provides high level away-from-home experiences for children who live with a disability from 6 to 19 years of age. This includes sleepovers in a purpose-built house within the grounds of Mackenzie Special School. The children are overseen by paid education and healthcare professionals. Every effort is made to match the children by age, interests and ability. At the sleepover, the children can play, share meals (which they help prepare), watch a movie, laugh, sleep and interact with others.

Not all children are up to a sleepover so BestLife also offers daytime programs.

In many cases, the children experience their first taste of independence through these expeditions. 

BestLife was founded in 2013 by families of young people living with disability. It’s management is largely run by volunteers. However, money is required to train teachers, healthcare and allied professionals to provide the high-level support needed for the children. Funding is also required to hire the venue, provide food and resource materials, etc.

A lack of government funding in this area severely restricts the number of children who can be accommodated in the various programs and the ability of the programs to operate successfully.

Dunellan Lodge set about fundraising to support BestLife in its programs and believe any assistance that can aid our children with a disability is a valuable and much needed contribution to this specific section of our community. Dunellan Lodge applaud BestLife for the dedication and work it is undertaking to help make a better life for the families and children placed in this situation.

The Lodge raised $600, and with the valuable assistance of Hand Heart Pocket the Charity of Freemasons Queensland dollar-for-dollar scheme, four children with disability were able to be covered by the program from the $1200 contribution.

Dunellan Lodge is proud to be associated with Hand Heart Pocket and BestLife in supporting families and children with disability.