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A Farm Day With Ellie

Our client Ellie and our support worker Maddison had a fabulous outing to Calmsley Hill City Farm at Abbotsbury, as part of our Community Services offerings. The farming of the land at Abbotsbury has a rich history going back almost 120 years and it’s a great way to experience rural life in the city. Interestingly, the Sydney Olympics Mountain Bike competition was held there back in 2000.

Ellie was the leader of the day! It was great to see her independence shining through - using her discover NSW voucher, buying her own ticket, speaking to the farm staff and answering any questions they asked her.

Ellie loved the animal nursery and this is where they spent the longest time. Ellie got to pet the goats and sheep - one of the sheep even stealing her feed bag from her! Maddison encouraged Ellie to learn more by asking the farmers about the animals and supported her communication where necessary.

Ellie and Maddison engaged with a young family after a goat bit one of the children’s clothes and was now scared to feed the rest of the animals. Ellie took initiative and showed the child that it was okay to feed the animals and demonstrated how to feed one of the cows. It was great to see Ellie using encouraging words – “see, like this”, “you can do it, you’re brave”, “I can help you if you want”. The mother was very appreciative and thanked Ellie for her kindness towards her child.

Ellie and Maddison also went on a tractor ride around parts of the farm, looking at some of the cattle. Ellie got the chance to milk one of the dairy cows and they watched the whip cracking show. When the farmer asked if anyone would like a turn, Ellie approached him and independently asked for a turn.

It was great to see Ellie take control over her day, maximise every moment and really be independent in her choices through Community Services.

Ellie also named these horses - spotted one: Maddi. Brown one: Bernice, the dark one next to brown one: Julie, and the one next to the spot one: Shirley. These are all names of her housemates and DSPs.

Team Leader Taylor said, “Maddison provided and found so many ways to help Ellie build skills. She was able to recognise the Active Support Principles she is embedding in her support too.”

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