Something for everyone at BEST Disability Support
There’s a buzz in the air at BEST Disability Support – and it’s no wonder.
With a gym, mechanic workshop, barbershop, virtual reality area, fully equipped kitchens, a recording studio and activity centre, there is always something happening for BEST’s members and the many school groups that visit each week.
The diversity of programs on offer for members – all Logan young people, age 17 to 25 who live with a disability – is no accident. Founder and director Chris Stan says he wanted to offer something for everyone.
‘I wanted something just for people in Logan – this is such a unique city and BEST caters to individuals whatever their cultural background, socioeconomic status, and ambition,’ he says.
‘We also help people navigate the NDIS – it’s something people can find quite challenging so we have helped a lot of people through that process.’
“This is such a unique city and BEST caters to individuals whatever their cultural background, socioeconomic status, and ambition”— Chris Stan
Chris, who is also a music producer, says he loves to see people discovering a passion and being able to turn it into a vocation.
‘One of the first members I worked with was very sad and isolated but loved music, so I showed him how to perform and use music production software and now he is a DJ. He has an ABN and is hired out for weddings, corporate events, school events and he is really happy,’ he says.
‘We’ve seen similar with people who spend time in the mechanic workshop, the barber’s or the garden – people can choose what they focus on and stay with it when they find something they love.’
Co-founder and operations manager Kim Denman has developed 10-week learning courses called ‘LAUNCH Learning’ which help address key life skills including money and budgeting, nutrition education, relationships, cyber safety and spelling, to name a few. The courses have a strong focus on “real world” application and employ a range of different strategies to ensure learner engagement. At completion, the learner receives the course booklet and certificate of achievement.
Between two work skill centres, BEST run 60 programs a week.
Chris and Kim opened BEST in Greenbank in July 2020, and quickly became so popular that it needed to look for a second location. The Slacks Creek venue opened in January this year, with extra features still being added.
Associate Andrew Chant, who, like Chris, is a Logan local and who is based at the Slacks Creek centre, says he is proud to work there.
‘We have freedom here to be flexible and do what we can to help our members and their families, and it’s so good to have that,’ he says.
‘It’s not a cookie cutter approach – and nor should it be.’