Nicola is an autistic person we support at Dudley Street, one of our National Autistic Society (NAS) accredited residential homes. Nicola is an incredibly positive person who always has a smile on her face, although this has often been hindered by her autism.
When Nicola first moved in, she struggled with her confidence and had extremely low self-esteem, which lead to her feeling shy, insecure, and dependent on others. The support team at Dudley Street worked with Nicola to create a person-centred plan focused around Nicola’s goals, encouraging her to become more independent and improve her confidence at her own pace.
Boosting Nicola’s confidence and self-esteem
Nicola’s objectives were tailored to her individual needs and were adapted and modified as her support team discovered what she felt comfortable with. By encouraging Nicola to believe in herself and her abilities, she’s been able to improve her daily living skills, including personal care techniques and ensuring her bathroom and bedroom were clean every day. Nicola has also learnt to cook and help prepare food in the kitchen. Creating new routines and learning necessary life skills has helped Nicola towards reaching her goal of becoming more self-assured and independent.
Connecting with others was also important to Nicola. With encouragement from her support team, she has been able to take part in more activities and hobbies that she has an interest in, whilst making new friends. Nicola loves karaoke, going to discos and heading out to the shops. These activities have helped her to feel good about herself and enabled Nicola to come out of her shell.
“Nicola was very quiet and shy, and we taught her to come out of shell by speaking to her every day, having a laugh and joke and dancing around”June, Support Worker at Dudley Street.
Finding purpose in work experience
Now that Nicola had a little more confidence, she was keen to learn about volunteer opportunities in the local community, so she decided to reach out to a local charity shop. After learning more about the application process, Nicola contacted the shop directly to apply and she got the job!
Despite initially feeling very much out of her comfort zone, Nicola now works at the shop three days a week. Having a regular job in the community has improved Nicola’s independence immensely and has helped her to interact with others.
Becoming a Voyage Care Quality Checker
Nicola’s newfound confidence has opened her up to further opportunities and she has recently become a Quality Checker at Voyage Care! Quality Checkers are people we support who work with our Quality Team. They visit services and gather feedback from other people we support, to help to understand how we can improve quality in our services.
“The biggest step I took was the [Quality Checkers] interview. It was good. It was really a big step for me, because I was nervous, but I got over it at the end of it. It just encouraged me to get out there and just be more of an adult.”Nicola, person we support at Dudley Street.
A bright future
Since joining Dudley Street, Nicola has embarked on a remarkable journey, developing her self-confidence and independence by creating positive and trustworthy relationships at the home and within the community. Improvement in her social interactions and wellbeing has meant that the team could really focus on building Nicola’s day-to-day life and social skills, and as a result, her quality of life has improved!
“She has come on absolute leaps and bounds, which we are very proud of and I’m really happy about what we’ve all achieved together.”June, Support Worker at Dudley Street.
Learn more about our residential autism services
If you’d like to learn more about Dudley Street or any of our residential or specialist autism services can support you or a loved one, fill in our quick and easy enquiry form and a member of our team will be in touch!