Making personalisation real within supported living in Bristol

TLAP has been searching for evidence of getting it right for people in registered services. Flora Frazer from provider Manor Community tells us how they worked with Joe, helping him regain his confidence and motivation to live a purposeful life.

We embraced TLAPs Making it Real (opens new window) framework early on to complement our focus on supporting people to live their life to the fullest. We understand that care and support must be individually tailored and in walking the walk, Joe’s experience has made us all very proud. The staff team supporting him have enabled him to be the best version of himself. 

Joe is autistic and before he lived at Manor Community, he’d isolate in his bedroom, disengaging with activities and people, routinely living with a high level of distress and anxiety. 

Joe moved into his new home two years ago, sharing a two-bedroom flat with another person. Initially, Joe did not want to talk and would use his tablet or notebook to communicate. We created a small, consistent staff team where he was able to get to know everyone quickly. We looked for people interested in getting to know Joe and when we recruit, new staff are asked to cover three days of shadow shifts with established members of staff who know him well, to build relationships and shared understanding. We asked Joe for his feedback after meeting new shadow staff members to give him an opportunity to say whether he’d like that member of staff to become a part of his team.

We encouraged Joe to write a daily feelings diary, before sitting with his team each evening to read through, Joe quickly began to trust the staff and started to find his voice, building from a few words, to quite quickly, talking fully to his whole staff team; just using his tablet/ feelings diary to communicate with new people. Monthly meetings for Joe and his key worker ensure that Joe is in the driving seat of his own care, his objectives and the steps to achieve his goals. We’re able to share Joe’s plan with the rest of his team for the next month. It’s fair to say that Joe has gone from strength to strength since joining us, surpassing all his own expectations. 

Our care plans are all goals based and in assessing Joe’s goals, his key worker proposes solutions to achieve these. For example, Joe had not used the bus in over four years; enabling Joe with the help of a trusted carer, to get on the bus, initially for just one stop, his confidence soon grew from there such that Joe can now use public transport for short journeys. 

Joe wanted to join in a lot of activities, however, always felt too anxious, so his key worker sits with him, helping Joe choose an activity, showing him pictures of what to expect from the environment, choosing times/ days where it will be less busy. When Joe does go out, staff are always mindful that he may need and plan in extra support to cope with sensory overload. With this level of preparation Joe has been able to participate in all sorts of new activities that in the past he would not have considered, such as going to theme parks, museums and even into caves!

We’re delighted that Joe has got his life back, how much we’ve learned from being led by his objectives and our values to ensure that Joe can keep progressing, more confident of living his best life.


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