Rob is 37 and drives 40 minutes several times a week to provide care for his younger brother, Adam.
He has a ‘take the bull by the horns outlook’ on life and balances acting, photography, videography and being an unpaid carer.
A brotherly bond
After an unexpected accident in 2018, Adam is now paralysed from the chest down and uses a wheelchair. Rob helps Adam with bathing, cooking, getting to appointments, housework and mowing the lawn.
'Our situation is one that always evolves, so each week isn’t the same,” said Rob. “Some weeks all I do is drop off groceries, other weeks its groceries, a petrol run and taking Adam’s Great Dane to the vets.'
Recently, Rob helped Adam move house. 'It went beyond coordinating the movers and making sure all the furniture was cared for. I also had to stay behind to do the last cleanings and inspections, hand over the keys and remove anything left behind.'
Calling yourself a carer
Before Adam’s accident, Rob worked full-time, managing the marketing and social media for a local pub.
'I let life shift so it suited everyone best. I figured a happy and healthy family is one of the most important things in life. Plus, now I get to see my brother more.'
Rob wants to remind others that you can start providing care and support in even the smallest of ways. “After Adam’s accident I found a task I could manage, I did the grocery shopping. I kept it up and eventually realised I was managing more and more.”
'I honestly didn’t realise I was a carer at the start, it’s not like there’s a membership,” admits Rob. “I always assumed a carer was a little old nurse who was looking after people. I thought I was just a brother who had the room in my life to help. But now that I know I’m a carer, I can proudly say I’m a carer.'
Help and support
Throughout life Rob has always been very good at taking on stress and tackling problems face on.
'I see the positives, so I focus on the positives,' said Rob.
But while he’s no stranger to hard work, Rob is looking for some support himself.
'Through Carer Gateway, I’m getting some help to tidy my own home once a month, resources to get my dogs trained so I can bring them with me when I’m visiting Adam, and information about wheelchair accessible activities across Australia that we can do together.'