Community-based day activities and supports for people with learning disabilities

10 key tasks - Key task 2: Changing the model to community life

Important things for commissioners and managers to do

Practice examples

Since moving from the local authority in 2005 (with agreement from social services), Pure Innovations in Stockport has been eligible for funding not available to local authorities. The service has a clear set of principles: it will not do anything that does not result in people with learning disabilities taking on valued roles in their community. The service currently runs a museum, a community radio station, cafés in several local museums and historic houses, and a high street café. People are working alongside park wardens to maintain and upgrade local parks. One day centre currently remains and is gradually supporting people to find new opportunities. Employment and volunteering are the core elements of the organisation, and self advocates and parents are important players in its management.

Hackney Independent Living Team’s day service team moved away from a buildings-base a few years ago. The team supports several people with quite complex needs, including people with autism, so the organisation invested in multi-media training and support and in specific skills training. People supported by the team now have visual diaries and prompts, and staff use more structured approaches. People who have been excluded by other services are using community facilities and public transport with very individualised support.

For other practice examples and useful resources see the Key Ingredients sections Cultural change in services, Smart commissioning and Community capacity-building.