Kevin is now living in an affordable housing unit, close to family, which is helping him to rebuild his life after a car accident.
The 62-year-old moved into his new home in Thornton NSW in June this year.
New Zealand born, Kevin moved to Australia aged 18. He has always worked in a range of roles including as an optical mechanic, in security and in hotel management.
On a very rainy day in Tamworth in October 2019, Kevin was involved in a road accident just outside of Tamworth.
“The rain was that heavy you could hardly see out the front windscreen,” Kevin said.
Kevin was in Tamworth Hospital for a month, receiving treatment for his injuries.
“I was in an induced coma for a week and a half,” he said.
“I lost close to 40 pounds while I was there.”
Kevin has an acquired brain injury from the accident. He suffers short term memory loss, affecting his ability to find work full time and to keep a schedule.
“I wake up some days and have to look at my mobile phone to know what day it is. That’s the real frustrating part of it.”
Kevin was living in a caravan park in Wollongong, paying high rent and feeling isolated.
He says the stability of a new, permanent, roof over his head will help him to be more independent and become active again. Being close to his daughter Jenna is important because she has been “a world of support.”
“It’s lovely area.”
“I’ve got good neighbours. We have get togethers in the communal areas.”
“It’s easy to work, you just need to put yourself out there and make yourself available.”
“I’ve always loved sport, I played first grade rugby in New Zealand. I’ve always loved training, I’m looking at getting back into it soon.”
Kevin’s story shows how a life changing event can mean anyone may end up needing affordable housing support.
Home in Place manages more than 900 affordable housing properties. Affordable Housing is offered at a rebated rent to low-income workers, who would otherwise experience housing stress in the private rental market. Rents are capped at between 75% and 80% of the assessed market rate for the property. It can provide a stepping stone for people to move back into the private property market.