Independent living, is a philosophy, a way of looking at disability and society, and a worldwide movement of people with disabilities working for self-determination, self-respect and equal opportunities. In the context of eldercare, independent living is seen as a step in the continuum of care, with assisted living being the next step.

Independent living is a living arrangement for disabled people and others with special needs, usually in their own home, affording them as much independence and autonomy as possible.


In 1983, the Richmond report on Mental Health Services in N.S.W. recommended that institutions should be closed and the patients integrated into the general community where possible.

Sustain is passionate about helping people with disabilities integrate into community living. We will do this by partnering with disability service providers to assist in the health and wellbeing of each person.

The cottage was officially opened by The Hon Andrew Constance MP, Minister for Ageing & Minister for Disability. We plan on building more group homes to accommodate people with disabilities.In 2012 Thorndale celebrated the opening of Carinya Cottage.

Thorndale’s first purpose built group home for five residents with intellectual disability. These residents have lived with Thorndale at Orchard Hills for over 30 years and will now have the opportunity to live in the community in a home especially built for their needs. Carinya was designed and built by Josh Vrsaljko.

Josh Vrsaljko was instrumental in the design and construction of this home in consultation with the client Thorndale Foundation.