Like many university students, 20-year-old Bevan is focused on completing his degree and finding out what direction he wants to take in life.
Bevan and his LAC Coordinator.
While managing the ups and downs of early adult life, Bevan also must navigate the world as an individual living with Asperger Syndrome.
Bevan receives a National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) plan that he utilises to support him in managing his mental and physical health.
Accessing the NDIS is a process which often involves complex paperwork. Now, with the support of his SSI Local Area Coordinator (LAC) Planner, Indu Pandey, Bevan can focus less on the paperwork and more on getting the most out of life.
In 2009 Bevan was diagnosed with Asperger Syndrome, a learning which he describes as 'completely changing his life.’
“I found the NDIS in 2017 and started receiving support from the LAC shortly after. It has really helped me manage my disability in both my personal and public life and overcome obstacles I never thought I would overcome at first,” said Bevan.
Throughout his life Bevan has lived with both the challenges, and benefits of an Asperger’s diagnosis. Growing up, one of his greatest challenges was the social aspect of school life.
“I was a bit of an outcast at school and sometimes did things that made people a bit uncomfortable, but I didn’t really understand how or why I made them uncomfortable,” said Bevan.
Around this time, his teachers and medical professionals also noticed his incredible ability to retain information and identified him as having a photographic memory.
“I found out that I had a photographic memory when I was finishing primary school and my teachers and psychologists noticed it. My memory helps me with my studies and everyday life because I can remember important details. “
Bevan is currently in his third year of a Bachelor of Science, Majoring in Mathematics, at UTS. He hopes to continue his education and specialise his skills in the coming years.
“I would like to do some document analysis, which involves analysing documents to see if there are any inconsistencies or forgeries.”
Much like his earlier years, Bevan’s greatest challenges are found in social interactions and connecting with other people.
“Anxiety, agitation, and controlling my temper are challenges. It can be hard because sometimes my parents don’t even understand me. It kind of makes me nervous because I would like to become a husband or father one day, but I worry that I may not be the right person for the job because of my condition,” said Bevan.
Now, with the support Bevan is receiving through his NDIS plan and the coordination and support provided by his LAC planner, Bevan is finding it easier to connect with others.
“Socialising used to be the hardest part of living with Asperger’s, but not as much now. I have started going to social events more,” he said.
With the support of SSI’s LAC program and his therapist, Bevan has joined a local social group for young people living with disabilities. He explained that he now frequently attends events such as music festivals, going to restaurants or just meeting up to chat.