Andrew, 43, has Tourette’s syndrome, ADHD and OCD and has recently transitioned from residential care to supported living accommodation provided by Milestones Trust. Following 27 years in residential care, this move marks a major step in Andrew’s journey towards independent living.
Milestones Trust project co-ordinator Julie Wheaton has worked closely with Andrew to create a tailored support programme.
“The move from residential care into supported living can be challenging and equally rewarding for the people we support. It is the change from having very closely monitored care to a service that is more flexible, tailored to their interests and needs. Andrew relocated to a Milestones Supported Living Service at the end of last year and we’ve created a tailored support plan for him. His enthusiasm has helped him to settle in really well at his new home.”
Moving to a new area has meant that one of the first skills Andrew is being supported with is getting around and learning where everything is locally. Andrew explained:
“They’ve helped me become confident in using the buses, so I don’t get lost and can get about independently. It’s just about getting the confidence in new areas. I know exactly where to go now, which bus stop and how to get there. I’m looking at working at ‘day services’ (employment training services) too, so it will be very useful for that.”
Andrew is growing in confidence and the support from Julie and the team is helping him become more independent. Julie continued:
“We support people to live their life how they want to, and the support level is dependent on their needs. Andrew has an active timetable as he has lots of interests – he likes fishing, walking and going out and we’re supporting him so that he can enjoy the things he likes. But also, it’s about day to day tasks like setting up amenities, managing medication and budgeting – we support our service users with these skills to help them lead a more independent lifestyle.
“We also recommend workshops that could be beneficial to the people we support, like food hygiene courses or training on staying safe – it is about signposting the opportunities and letting them decide if it’s something they’re interested in learning about.”
Andrew has his own flat but also has the option to socialise with the other service users, giving him a true sense of independence. He said:
“I love where I live. It’s the best ever. I have my own space, the staff support us when we need them, and I can crack on with what I want to do. It’s amazing. It’s just the bees’ knees! The staff are very supportive and caring and great at helping me learn new things. I know that they are there and that they’re friendly. The support they’ve given me is spot on, it’s perfect.
“I like feeling confident in what I want to do and I’m glad I had the opportunity to live in a supported living flat. It’s the best option for me. It’s exactly what I wanted. You have your own space, but have the opportunity to join in on a communal meal in the eating area so you can get together. Compared to residential care, the difference is you can crack on with what you’re doing and learn the skills you need, have 24/7 support but your own independence.”
Milestones Trust recently launched a new website aimed at those interested in working in the care. Visit the Milestones Trust recruitment website to find out more.