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Lifelong learners focus on disability sector

MK homes alumni Michael and KarenMichael Wallis and Karen Vassallo are the talents behind MKhomemod’s, a local building and design company specialising in providing independent living solutions for the disability sector.

The duo studied building design and building and construction with The Gordon, allowing them to expand their skills and business offerings.

“We chose to study a Diploma of Building and Construction as we knew it would allow our business to expand and, in turn, be able to provide an additional service to our clients. We had already been working in the industry through the drafting side, but we wanted to be able to do more within the disability sector. The course was offered online, which suited our busy day jobs,” said Michael, director of MKhomemod’s.

Michael and Karen had completed an Advanced Diploma of Building Design through The Gordon, which was a wonderful experience, so they had no hesitation in enrolling with the TAFE again. 

“You could say we are now a one-stop shop! We work within the disability sector, and most of our work is derived from occupational therapy firms. We receive a request from an OT who has a participant who requires complex home modifications,” said Michael. 

The pair initially undertake a site visit where they measure and take photos, prepare drawings and a photo journal, supply a fixtures, fittings and equipment list, and provide this to the OT to support their NDIS application.
“Our services include an initial meeting and site visit at the participant’s home with the builder and the Occupational Therapist to go through the approved scope of work. Works that require project management call upon our services also.” 

Michael and Karen understand that specialist disability accommodation is essential for people with high-level complex needs. Part of that understanding is knowing what the home needs to look like to meet the occupant’s needs so they can have a space where they can not only live, but come alive.

“Our services provide personal, physical and emotional support to people with a disability on a regular basis, which helps them feel independent, confident and a part of their community,” said Michael.

With the skills and knowledge to plan and coordinate the construction of residential and commercial buildings, MKhomemod’s business is growing, with the services provided resulting in many wonderful outcomes.  

“We are devoted to delivering independent living arrangements, health and wellbeing. With our profession allowing us to make a real difference in people's lives, we have future goals of expansion within the company as well as providing our services interstate in the future,” said Michael.

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