So the journey continues with Willo and we move seamlessly from working cricket bats to looking more like a little business. A business which has the potential to be a model for other young people living with disabilities.
We’ve made money from the auction of over 60 bats to invest into the backend of Willo and gain some comfort in the knowing we can do what we always wanted to do for Will. Assist him to become independent after we are long gone. Its a difficult thought but one which had to be considered.
The idea, plan or perhaps dream was to be able to employ a carer to further develop Wills skills around life and living and his connections to his community. So many things we take for granted in day to day to life .. these need to be taught over and over and over again before they become a habit. Its a long journey.
Over the years we had undertaken many programs to develop his social and life skills and many at the Kazcare Grounds in the Southern Highlands. Many conversations around programs for young people living with disabilities .. what more can be provided for them and how do we create more opportunities for learning and employment.
We were contacted by Peter Kazacos, the man behind Kazcare to talk through the idea of Kazcare supporting Willo to establish his business. The discussion was so incredibly real for us as it meant fast tracking all we had dreamt. Peter was prepared to back Will and his fledgling business for the first year whilst we got it up and running.
We soon started renovating a beautiful red rattler that was parked on the Kazcare Grounds. The Grounds, previously known as the Rudolf Steiner School, is now also home to Cookability, Youth Radio, a koori cafe, and many other groups that support programs for diversity in our community. Kazcare supports all ways to enrich the lives of people who would normally have challenges. Our web site was being constructed and weekly meetings talking through the sustainability of Willo Industries. Peter brought a wealth of experience and compassion to the table for us and we soon found ourselves on the road to cementing Wills business. Peter so generously opened the conversations with “what do you want for Will?, .. whatever we do we want to make sure it is based on your dream and ideas?”. He was generous in every way.
It will be a model we hope for many other families and children living with disabilities in regional communities. We have always believed in the power of perseverance and belief and this is a big part of the model. Have an idea .. yes .. but its how you implement that idea that matters most. Along the way we have discovered more and more the importance of being authentic to the way Will works and what matters most to him amongst this time of growing the business.
To open the door to people helping has been a big realisation … we cannot do everything as parents of kids with disabilities and its ok to let go.
Will continues to teach us to be authentic, to be into moment and live truthfully.