Streamlined service transition from children to adult services for multiple support needs

Children with complex neurodevelopmental conditions often go from a large network of support providers including specialist teachers, pupil support, therapists, school doctors etc to a drastic reduction in the number of supports they will have available on as regular a basis once they leave children's services. This is further compounded by the reduction in the number of specialist day services that are available as many day centres have closed in favour of finding other community based options for day and evening/weekend  activities. This apparent 'freedom to choose' option is not always appropriate for some due to the complexity of physical needs, social, communication and cognitive needs or mental health issues and families can feel as if they have "fallen through a net". The child loses the many social contacts from peers and staff to being with 1-2 carers who can also feel isolated and out of their depth or running out of ideas on new and inexpensive activities that are beneficial.

We offer child through to adult services in Westhill and are open to City and Shire service user but are not widely known as it is hard to get our services advertised via the statutory service transition services. We would like to have clearer routes to let families know about what we can offer in the lead up to transition planning.

Why the contribution is important

The needs experienced by a child are unlikely to disappear as they enter adulthood and a smooth transition should be plabnned carefully being aware of all services and opportunities that are in the community. The young adults and parents, carers or guardians can only make the best choices with all information readily available and should have opportunities to meet peers or others dealing with similar issues if this is where they are most relaxed and confident.

Learning new skills continues into adulthood and sharing of key information is essential to create optimal learning environments and opportunities. This is generally when people are calm, alert, focused and motivated and not all mainstream community facilities are able to provide this or the special adaptations for sensory and communication needs.

It is important that children and parents feel they are supported as they go from the hectic, socially inclusive school settings, to adult services that will continue the good work started within the school years.

by adelelindsay on December 01, 2016 at 04:13PM

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