North East Autism Society (NEAS)
NEAS post -19 provision has developed a diverse range of service to meet a diverse range of needs. We believe it is crucial that provision should match the individual requirements of those who participate.
We strive to ensure that, as a specialist provider, we have been responsive to the shifting needs of individuals and policy makers. Individuals who access our services have access to personalised programmes. We are driven to achieve this by working in collaboration with a range of relevant agencies and by working in partnership with the individual, tailoring programmes to meet their individual needs and personal objectives in a way which delivers success.
Autism itself can present challenges to the person-centred planning process, since many people with autism experiences difficulties with communication, abstract thinking and expressing their aspirations, all of which are at the heart of person-centred planning processes.
The organisation promotes person centred approaches by supporting the essential holistic nature of planning and we remind ourselves of the need to start with the individual’s life goals and their aspirations and not with a target which is subject specific.
NEAS offers the following services to adults with ASC, learning difficulties and, or disabilities:
• Thornbeck College (see separate entry below)
• Day Services
• Residential Services
• Domiciliary Care and Outreach Services
• Supported Living
NEAS is committed to ensuring its service users are at the heart of the services we provide. All learners/service users follow a person centred programme which guides them to develop the skills they need as an adult for living and work. A person centred approach underpins each learner’s/service user’s programme to ensure they have the opportunity to fulfil their long term goals.
The organisation has adopted the five key features of person –centred planning, as follows:
- The person is at the centre of the planning process
- Family and friends are partners in planning
- The plan shows what is important to a person now and for the future and what support they need
- The plan helps the person to be part of a community of their choosing and helps the community to welcome them
- The plan puts into action what a person wants for their life and keeps on listening. The plan remains ‘live’.
The organisation promotes that person centred thinking is crucial. This has developed staff awareness that individuals must have control in areas such as who supports them, what they do with their day, being listened to, and making decisions about their lives.
We have adapted the above principles so that they can be more easily understood by the individual.
• Who am I?
• What do I want to do?
• How am I going to get there?
• How am I doing?
• What next?
It is essential that people’s preferred ways of communicating are taken into account so that they can play a full part in the planning process. The approach requires people and agencies to work together to be able to respond to individuals needs and aspirations. The organisation ensures that the family and wider social network are seen as a source of information. This starts from the pre-entry process through to transition.
NEAS believes that the development of a skilled workforce is vital in the provision of quality services for people with ASC. Training is implemented to provide staff with the theoretical understanding and the practical skills so that they:
• Understand the theory of ASC
• Understand how ASC affects the individual
• Can communicate effectively with the individual concerned
• Can suggest realistic ways to implement the plan
A visible commitment from Senior Managers has been used to create a person-centred culture within the organisation where everyone understands the vision and their roles within it. Senior managers have used person-centred approaches to help create a person-centred culture that delivers personalised services.
Person centred team principles describe the ‘who and ‘how’ to make it happen. Senior managers have implemented and embedded peer reviews to improve learning by sharing the knowledge, understanding and skills of experienced staff with new staff.
Self-reflection supported by peer observation, self-evaluation and mutually beneficial critical reflective dialogue has encouraged and supported personal
development. It also allows both the observer and the observed to develop their own practice and improve the quality of the individual’s experience or the quality of provisions. It is viewed as a process through which staff can add evidence of their skills and expertise and share best practice.
Senior Managers have ensured NEAS is aware of their need to ensure that the needs of each unique person can be met in a way that suits their personal and individual circumstances.
The organisation can demonstrate that we have been responsive and have used our specialism to develop capacity for individuals with ASC learning difficulties and or disabilities within the North East region, ensuring that this responsiveness can be evidenced throughout individual services and personalised programmes that meet the needs for service users that are based on the understanding of an effective assessment and programmes that are fit for purpose.
The organisation can clearly demonstrate that all provision is of high quality and that it strives consistently to meet the challenge to further improve. We can demonstrate that we maintain and evidence good financial health and strong financial controls that demonstrate effective use of all resources including staff.
NEAS can evidence that it is responsive to shifting needs of individuals and policy makers and have a thorough understanding of some of the implications relating to the Personalisation agenda including:
• Relationships with partners
NEAS have developed flexible funding systems to support person-centred services. The aim is to provide person centred provision where the fees for our services are individualised, transparent and stand up to robust scrutiny from commissioners.
NEAS challenges how services are provided to ensure they are provided in the right way. We compare our performance with other providers. We consult with stakeholders about priorities, quality and performance. We will also be competitive by analysing the costs to our service and comparing them with other similar services, taking into account the quality of our provision.
Telephone: 0191 515 4640
Address: Angel House, Borough Road, Sunderland, SR1 1HW