I visited 14 services last week and was particularly impressed with the service at Willesden Lane in Brent. This is a supported living service supporting 5 people with profound and multiple learning disabilities. The staff team are extremely enthusiastic and positive and there is a real person centred atmosphere in the service which is reflected on how homely each person’s bedroom is and the great photos of the people we support in the communal areas. People who live there come from a range of cultural backgrounds and that is clearly reflected in the way that they are supported including the way in which their individual bedrooms are decorated.
The people we support have busy activity programmes, including in the community and with good support around their sensory needs. When I visited, staff and people we support had just returned from shopping and again I was impressed with the healthy fruit and vegetables which had been purchased.
As you know, I think social inclusion is very important. As well as people from Willesden Lane being out and about in the community regularly, they are also supported to attend the local church, where they have established relationships with other members of the congregation.
I would also like to mention 2 other initiatives which push the boundaries of what people we support with profound and multiple learning disabilities can achieve.
A lady we support at our Chandon service in Ashtead, has started doing voluntary work with animals and a person we support at our Dyke Road service in Brighton is going to be taking on a job as a ‘mystery shopper’ checking out the accessibility of pubs, clubs and shops for disabled people. With support from his keyworker, he will complete an accessible questionnaire after each visit.
We also held the amazing Supportive Therapies Day this week and I will post more on this in next week’s blog. It really is a fantastic event tailored specifically for our PMLD service users.