Summer Foundation’s inclusive model of housing and support for people with significant disabilities

  • Over the past 5 years, the Summer Foundation has developed and refined an innovative model of housing and support for people with significant disabilities. Our unique model aims to demonstrate that the provision of good quality housing that is accessible and centrally located, improves quality of life and social inclusion, while decreasing reliance on paid supports and reducing life-time care costs. The aim of these demonstration projects is to influence policy and create systemic change.

    We will share our design objectives and showcase our first two housing demonstration projects in Inner-Melbourne VIC and the NDIS trial site in the Hunter Region NSW. These housing demonstration projects have 6-10 apartments for people with disability peppered throughout larger residential developments. An additional space onsite provides a based for disability support workers to provide 24 hours oncall support. The apartments are designed to achieve ‘Platinum’ level certification under the Livable Housing Design Guidelines. Rather than being highly specialized and institutional in style, the apartments are adaptable and accommodate a wide range of individual preferences and abilities. They are designed to accommodate family and friends staying over, or living with the person. Smart home and communications technology incorporated into the apartments allow tenants to live with greater independence and privacy, by having as much control over their home environment as possible. The sites are well located near accessible public transport, shops and services.

    Our long-term version that this model of integrated housing will be routinely included in all new medium and high-density residential developments throughout Australia. We will outline our plan to partner with government, community housing providers and developers to replicate and scale this integrated model of housing and support. We share the knowledge generated by these projects and provide links to reports and videos.

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