Paraplegic Scarborough Resident on the Road to Recovery with NDIS Support

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Robert Van Kuyl, a 65-year-old paraplegic and Scarborough resident, is on the road to recovery, with goals set to be out of his wheelchair by Christmas.

After a helicopter accident in 2018, Robert was left paralysed and unable to walk, but with the help of the National Disability Insurance Scheme, or NDIS, he is finally gaining strength and aims to be out of his wheelchair by the end of 2021. 

The 65-year-old Scarborough resident regularly exercises to improve his strength and his ability to walk with crutches. With the aid of his NDIS support workers, Robert is able to regularly exercise and build up his muscles to help him navigate and maneuver around. 

“My support worker drives me to exercise therapy at Burleigh where I do my two-hour training session,” said Robert. “The job they do there is amazing; they push you in that gym and the improvements are mind-blowing.”

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“I can now stand up in the kitchen and get food ready for cooking independently, can walk 30 metres and getting even better over the last year; I couldn’t do a leg press when I started, but now I can do a 55 kilogram leg press.” 

Robert’s daily routine starts with him performing stretches in the morning with the aid of his supports, who then accompany him and help him do the rounds as he goes to see his friends, do some gardening, and go to hydrotherapy. As part of his exercises, Robert also busies himself with the pool and weight training. 

Exercise alone wasn’t enough to help Robert recover, as he had also received a stem cell transplant in Germany in 2018. “The stem cells have opened enough doors to make my life better than it was four years ago, with my exercise therapy helping too,” he commented.

Photo credit: Supplied

With the aid of his NDIS supports, Robert has managed to adapt and become strong enough to step in and out of his motorhome and have a hand walker to help him walk around. Now, his goal is to be able to get in and out using only crutches.

Robert received help to apply for, and make use of his NDIS funding from Carers Queensland’s NDIS Local Area Coordination Partner in the Community Program for the Moreton Bay region. To learn more about the NDIS, visit their website here. Follow their social media pages on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter for the latest on the services they can provide, as well as any other relevant events, dates, and exciting updates.