Accessible Properties provides a safe place for Elly

Elly Rawiri

Before moving to an Accessible Properties unit, Elly Rawiri had been living in a Woman’s Refuge for over a year. She had been removed from the rural homestead she had been living in by the healthcare provider supporting her with her heart and respiratory problems.

“The homestead had been abandoned for some time before I moved in. When I tried to get the electricity put on the power company said the wiring would need checking as it had been off for over six months” Elly said. “I knew it wouldn’t pass as there were rats and mice in the house and they had chewed the wiring. I didn’t have the money to get it fixed.” As there was no power, the house also had no water as an electric pump was needed to get water to the house. The hot water cylinder had been stolen, the walls needed fixing, and the home leaked. Elly had to drive a few kilometres to collect water for drinking and cooking.

“My health was really suffering as it was so cold and damp. I need a Continuous Positive Airways Pressure (CPAP) machine to keep my airways open when I sleep as I suffer from sleep apnoea, but without power I couldn’t use it.

As she had nowhere else to go, Elly went and stayed in a Woman’s Refuge and later stayed with friends and family while she was waiting for a home to become available. She suffered from depression and her health continued to suffer as she was often staying with people who smoked.

Elly moved into her one bedroom unit provided by Accessible Properties two weeks ago. When asked about her new home, Elly’s mood changes and she is upbeat and excited to talk about it. “I love it!” she says enthusiastically. “It is just the right size for me. It’s warm and easy to clean. My health is way better and I can have a shower every day. I can finally use my CPAP machine again which helps with my sleep”.

Because Elly has a permanent home she can make plans as she knows where she will be. “I’m making plans to keep busy and improve my health. I can do swimming and other exercise as there are facilities nearby.

“The people here are really friendly too. When I first moved in some of my new neighbours stopped to say hello and introduce themselves. It is a really nice place to live” she adds.

Even though she has only been in her new home for a couple of weeks Elly says she is feeling great. Her health is improving and her depression is much better. “I am blessed!” she says.

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