The Mowbray family values

The Mowbrays

The name of the National Disability Insurance Scheme sounds a little cold and beaureacratic. But just one extraordinary family puts the human face on the NDIS and demonstrates its impact, The Canberra Times reports.

Laughter and chatter echoes through the Mowbray family home upon entering the front door. These are the noises of a happy family.

And this a family where having a voice is clearly cherished.

For Trish and Glenn Mowbray, communication with their four children is an important part of the secret to their happy family - where everyone gets a say in how they want to live their life.

'The whole point of our family is that every person, as an individual, gets to grow. That includes me as the primary carer, that includes Glenn but also our four children and grandson in reaching their full potential,' Trish Mowbray says.

'All our boys work, they all have their own super fund and they all have their own private insurance.'

As the parents of children with special needs, Mr and Mrs Mowbray know just how important it is for people with disability have a say in their own lives.

After discovering they could not have children, the couple decided to offer their love and home to a child with a disability. First came Luke, who has Down syndrome, autism, severe hearing loss and a wicked sense of humour, followed by the family's social director Peter, who also has Down syndrome and despite having open heart surgery as a baby, is now very active.

Then came Emmalee who had medical issues as a child and is now a proud mum to 18-month-old Noah and to complete the brood, Paul, who too has Down syndrome and also had open heart surgery as a baby and is a Wiggles fan.

Mr and Mrs Mowbray say their children have taught them more than they could have ever imagined.

'After a while, you don't see the disability and all five of them, including (grandson) Noah, have a wicked sense of humour. We do a lot of laughing,' Mrs Mowbray said.

The couple, who have been married for 31 years, have worked hard to ensure their children live fulfilling lives and this is something they believe the National Disability Insurance Scheme has the potential to give thousands of other Canberrans living with disability.

The family is just one of nearly 5000 families in the ACT that will participate in the NDIS, which will be trialled in the ACT from next month.

FULL STORY: Meet the Mowbrays: the human face of the NDIS (The Canberra Times)

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