Learning Disabilities Service
Learning Disability Services
New Hope Care has been providing quality services for people with learning disabilities for over 8 years. We provide flexible, person centred services to meet the different needs of our service users. Our services include those designed specifically for individuals based on their assessed needs as well as larger contracts which offer flexibility and choice to people with a range of needs.
We have developed a range of services including intensive support for people with challenging behaviours, dual diagnosis, autism specific services, services for people with additional physical and sensory needs and community support for people who are more independent. We work closely with families, carers and other stakeholders to provide co-ordinated services for individuals. There is a high level of active service user participation with regular forums for service users with learning disabilities.
New Hope Care is committed to providing high quality, person centred services which promote the independence, choice and inclusion of the people we support and we have an excellent track record for the delivery of services which are truly personalised.
Across our services we highlight the importance of people being supported and encouraged to participate in a wide range of activities, and staff ensure that people enjoy full and active lifestyles. This helps to increase social inclusion and to make sure that people with learning disabilities have full access to the community resources, events and activities available. This in turn improves health and well-being and gives people the opportunity to strengthen their social networks and develop their confidence in social situations.
New Hope Care has embraced the key themes of the government’s Valuing People White Paper and Valuing People Now. We have adopted a person centred approach to ensuring that people with learning disabilities and complex needs:
- Have the same legal and civil rights as everyone else
- Are included in all aspects of their local community
- Have real choice and control over their daily lives
- Have real chances to achieve greater independence wherever possible
- Enjoy health, well-being and opportunities for fulfilment
The key part of our approach to Person Centred Planning is that the individual is at the centre of their plan, and is in control of their plan and what it contains. We make sure that service users and carers are fully involved in the development of Person Centred Plans.
All our employees working in services for people with learning disabilities are trained in Person Centred Planning: working in person centred ways, promoting rights and choices and developing Person Centred Plans (ELP, Path and MAP) with our service users. They are also trained to meet specialist communication needs so they can facilitate Person Centred Planning with service users who have little or no verbal communication, using communication techniques such as British Sign Language (BSL), Makaton and Picture Exchange Communication Systems (PECS). This ensures that all service users are able to plan around their individual goals and preferences.
We believe that everyone has the potential to make decisions about their lives, and that Support Workers must be skilled in helping them to do this, regardless of a service user’s ability to communicate verbally. New Hope Care expects all staff to ‘listen’ carefully at all times to service users and take appropriate action based upon their wishes, intentions and dreams.
Autistic Spectrum Disorders
New Hope Care is an experienced provider of services for people who are on the Autistic Spectrum. We have developed a number of innovative, high quality services that enable people with autism to lead happy and fulfilling lives. All of our services are delivered in a person centred way designed to promote independence and personal development.
The services that we deliver to people with autism are designed around individual needs. For this reason no two services look the same and we are proud of the way we have been able to tailor support packages and the living environment around the specific requirements of our service users (and their families).
Understanding the individual and their support needs
New Hope Care knows the importance of understanding the personalities and preferences of the people that we support. When we are putting a support package together we feel it is essential to work closely with the people that know the person best. Often this is the person’s own family but can equally include carers, professionals and friends. The professionals we often work with when delivering autism specific services include Speech and Language Therapists, Occupational Therapists, GP’s, Behavioural Specialists, Social Workers, Psychologists and Psychiatrists. We feel it is important to recognise and make use of the unique skills that each and every person can bring as part of a team approach.
We are also aware that to understand the individual person we need to understand how the sensory world and their environment affects their wellbeing and happiness. This is a key part of our work in autism services.
Transition & Person Centred Planning
Coping with change is difficult for most people but especially for people who are on the autistic spectrum. When we are supporting people with autism to make a significant move in their life we place a great deal of importance on detailed planning to achieve a high quality, smooth transition. We have experience of supporting people to make the transition from living within the family home, residential school placements and ‘out of county’ placements into a new support setting.
Person Centred Planning (PCP) plays a key role in ensuring that each person’s support needs, dreams and goals are being met. Within autism services we feel this is a particularly important process as services users often have difficulty in clearly expressing their preferences and wishes. We use a range of PCP tools and specialist communication techniques so that all individuals have a personalised plan and service in place whatever their level of communication and need.
At New Hope Care we deliver our services to people with autism in a way that recognises and respects that people communicate in different ways. We understand the importance of meeting individual communication needs and we train our staff to do so. Within our services it is common for communication aids such as Makaton, British Sign Language, PECS (Picture Exchange Communication Systems), Objects of Reference, TEACCH schedules and communication passports to be used to enable our support staff to communicate with our service users positively and effectively. This ensures that they provide the support the service users need and want.
Recruiting and training the staff team
New Hope Care provides opportunities for service users and their families to get involved in the recruitment of the staff team to make sure we recruit the right people. We employ people who have the positive values, personalities, skills and knowledge to provide effective support to people with autism. Once in post we recognise that all staff need on-going training to increase their knowledge and understanding of autism. All staff undertake the NVQ (National Vocational Qualification) in Health and Social Care and the LDQ (Learning Disability Qualification) and also access autism specific training and personal development programmes on an ongoing basis.