At Livability, we take pride in providing the best possible care and provision for the people we support. A big part of that is boosting people’s wellbeing on a day-to-day basis, something that has become even more important during the pandemic. We see wellbeing as so fundamental to good care that it is included in our business strategy.
Loneliness and isolation is a huge issue for people with disabilities and one which has a serious impact on wellbeing. Research shows that the proportion of disabled people who report feeling lonely ‘often or always’ is almost four times greater than that of non-disabled people – and the hardest hit are young adults.*
When an individual joins the Livability family, we support them to build lasting relationships with others, with housemates if they have them, or in the local community, and with family and friends. When Ashaq arrived at Livability York House, in West Yorkshire, he was not only extremely ill but very isolated and uncommunicative. The skilled staff team helped him to gain confidence and health, and after a year of very personalised care, Ashaq told staff he was happy and enjoying life.
Trying and mastering new things is a great boost to self-confidence and wellbeing, and it’s something that we promote across all our services. At Livability Icanho, our brain injury rehabilitation centre, where a multi-disciplinary therapy team works with people of all ages with acquired brain injury. Regaining mobility and life skills, such as cooking and driving, takes ongoing determination and courage from the client – and the team are always delighted to witness the positive changes for the client, their family and friends that progress brings.
But small steps of achievement are just as important and staff regularly see how this boosts wellbeing in the people we support. Learning to bake and getting his own mobile phone were steps forward for 19-year-old Matt, who lives at Livability Horizons, and whose goal is to live independently with others, in the community.
Our new Activities Resource Planner, Lee Ashcroft, is working with all our services to provide creative sessions that people of all abilities can enjoy. Supported by staff, these include; storytelling, exercise classes and mindfulness sessions. ‘We want to make sure all the people we support have access to activities that promote and improve their wellbeing,’ says Lee.
What makes for better wellbeing is a deeply individual matter and this is very evident at our education centres, Livability Victoria School and Livability Nash FE College. Even before a student’s first day, Victoria and Nash work with each individual to develop the best education plan for them, and to work towards their goals and ambitions for adult life. This is constantly reviewed and adjusted and may involve a completely different approach for some, as was the case for Jack**, whose wellbeing was suffering in a classroom setting. When he transferred to learning practical skills, such as maintenance work, he flourished and on leaving college, found a job in maintenance on a working farm, which he loves.