Activ customers learn self care with shine bright program

Female Activ customers have been learning about self-care and relationships as part of a ‘Shine Bright’ educational workshop recently delivered at a variety of locations around Perth.

Educational, fun, and tailored for a range of different ages and experiences, Shine Bright focused on providing participants with positive self-care and practical tools for mental health and wellbeing.

Attendees were given support packs to work through during the series of workshops and take home at the end, covering topics including Nutrition, Mind and Spirit, Sexuality and Consent, the Power of Movement, and Positive Relationships.

Activ Pathways trainer Christine Lovelock delivered each day-long Shine Bright workshop over the last five months and said the program was of huge benefit to the ongoing development of Activ customers’ social skills.

“What’s amazed me is how open attendees were,” Chris said. “I found the subjects we discussed in Shine Bright weren’t always discussed or talked about with people living with disability but Shine Bright was a safe space where they could say anything.”

Activ was able to run the Shine Bright program thanks to a generous bequest from the Susan Knight Memorial Fund, a trust fund established in memory of Susan.  This fund is managed by Future Living for the purpose of providing Activ female customers, like Susan, the opportunity to live their best lives through access to programs and services not available or funded elsewhere.

Future Living provides a range of services to guide, connect, support, advocate and protect clients and assist families to plan a safe and secure future for people living with intellectual disabilities.  These services assist families and guardians to answer the all too important question of ‘who will be there when we are not?’. Susan and her family planned ahead by engaging Future Living and this bequeathment has made a huge difference.

Activ CEO Michael Heath paid tribute to Susan’s generosity, saying it was an important and heartwarming legacy.

“Susan was a much-loved member of the Activ community and, while she is missed, receiving this gift in her will under the terms she specified was wonderful,” Mr Heath said.

“Her generosity has left an amazing legacy and made an incredible impact on the lives of more than 100 female Activ customers who took part in the Shine Bright workshop series.”

Future Living CEO Dr Samantha Neylon elaborated “This future planning ensures the trust is used to improve the lives of Susan’s peers and equip them with positive habits, knowledge and practical tools which will continue to help them throughout their lives – very much as Susan and her family wanted”

The Positive Relationships topic was one of the most popular, and workshops focused on teaching participants all about relationships alongside promoting self-care and delivering guidance on a diverse variety of topics including friendships, self-care, and boundaries.

Christine said the feedback was hugely positive and the attendees enjoyed themselves while learning.

“Participants have told me they found Shine Bright ‘really good’ and learned new things; this is why we’re running it. It’s important to talk to them as adults and they really respond well to that.”

A support worker of one of the attendees said “I thought it was fantastic. It should have been rolled out years ago since some of these women have no idea about consent, personal boundaries, and appropriate behaviour”.

Mr Heath and Dr Neylon reflected on the impact Susan has continued to make.

“Once you’ve looked after your family, a gift in your will to Activ or Future Living can ensure a lasting and impactful legacy that makes a meaningful and ongoing difference to the lives of West Australians living with disability,” he said.