Kevin grew up in Northland and lived with his Mum until he was 14 or 15, then he went to St John’s.
Kevin has a brother, Charlie, and a sister, Lynn, who are both in Auckland. Charlie’s also in a supported residential home (though with another support organisation), while Lynn is married with children.
Kevin worked when he was at St John’s, packing boxes, mowing the lawns, gardening, watering and planting the garden. In fact, he helped to do all the work with his friends – “Making the tea, doing the dishes, cleaning the sink…”
When he was at St John’s, Kevin’s clothes would get washed for him, though sometimes they went missing. “It was something I didn’t like – my clothes going,” says Kevin. “Now all my things stay together and I like that.”
When Kevin came out of St John’s in 1991, he went to Kotamu Road – the first Spectrum home he lived in. Then, in 1994, he moved to Fairview Road.
Kevin lives with his flatmate and friend Kenny in a two bedroom self-contained fl at, and there are four other people who live in the house on the same section.
Kevin helps clean the house up and clean the kitchen, and even pulls the fridge and freezer out to clean behind them! He’s very particular and likes the place to be tidy.
Kevin works at one of Spectrum Care’s Activity Centres from Monday to Thursday, putting white rubber washers on roofing bolts.
Kevin likes to keep his pay slips in his room and only uses the money he earns on special occasions.
The worst thing about where Kevin lives now, he says, is that some of the cups and bread plates are cracked.
He likes having his own room and his privacy, but sometimes people still come barging in… “You haven’t knocked, dummy!” he reminds them. “Knock first and respect my privacy!”
Once a month, Kevin goes to a cafe with his friend Charlie. Last month, they went to MOTAT and then to Manukau before returning home.
Kevin likes his home at Fairview Road because there’s no fighting with his flatmates. He says it’s much better than being at St John’s for that reason.
Kevin likes things tidy and he helps a lot with the cleaning. He likes where he lives and his bedroom is his own space.
“It’s far better than being at St John’s. I’ve got friends and there are no fights.
Excerpt from “Extraordinary Journeys – 12 extraordinary people retrace their journeys from institutional care to supported community living…”
Limited numbers of Extraordinary Journeys are available for $20 (+GST).
To order a copy, email the editor – Justin Walsh – by clicking here or call (09) 634 9788.
© Spectrum Care Trust Board
Published by Spectrum Care Trust Board