One of our residential care homes in Somerset supports up to 11 people. Our home is made up of three residential flats and the additional eight beds are respite rooms located in the seaside town of Minehead, Somerset.
Our home has a good reputation of supporting people that have gone into crisis, or people that require emergency support whether it is a placement breakdown or a breakdown at their family home.
Our most recent resident is a gentleman called Ben* who recently moved into one of our residential flats. Ben* came from another care home where he lived with other people and it was determined that it wasn’t a suitable place for him. This lead to increased behaviours Ben* was displaying.
Ben* is somebody that does not communicate verbally but can read and write and also uses a mixture of Makaton and BSL signing. Even though the staff team are used to supporting people in crisis, they have not supported someone with Ben’s* level of communication needs i.e. sign language, which is new to the staff team.
The staff took it upon themselves and found a sign language course that was held weekly in the local town. They went in their own time to learn as much as possible prior to Ben* moving in.
Ben* was finding the thought of transition difficult, so our staff arranged for him to visit the home a couple of times prior to his move. He met more of the support team and the staff also gave Ben* photos of themselves and their names to make the transition smoother and less scary.
The contracts were finalised late on Christmas Eve and Ben* was able to move in just three days later!
Since Ben’s* move, he has settled in well and has not needed any additional medication for his behaviours and our staff believe this is because he is in a more appropriate setting. Even though Ben* now lives in his own flat, he is continuously empowered by the staff to interact with others within the home and on activities.
The staff knew that Ben* never enjoyed a lot of activities but since his move to one of our services in Somerset, he enjoys his daily trip to the local shop to buy his can of coke and newspaper. This also enables Ben* to engage with others within the local community and increase his social skills.
Ben* also enjoys attending a weekly keep fit class, with the other residents at our services and other people outside of Voyage Care, where he loves to show off his moves.
Ben* now attends the local disco held. This has been running for the past three years and is organised by our staff.
He continues to enjoy watching football and rugby and has begun attending matches to watch some of the members of staff play with the local teams. Ben* also enjoys showing off his football skills at our services and will often play football in the garden with staff.
The team are very good at finding activities for Ben* to do. He is given a variety of choices and they support him to attend these.
Ben’s* transition was a success thanks to the support of his staff team at our services. And we look forward to seeing how he progresses in the future!