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Services for Independent Living

SIL is a user led organisation providing services that enable disabled and older people to live independent lives in their own homes within their own community. We work in partnership with Local Authorities, the Health Service and other voluntary and local organisations and individuals in a common effort to improve the lives of disabled and older people and their family carers, and to facilitate their participation in and full integration into society.

Updated:
16 November 2016
Location:
West Midlands
Sectors:
Communication, Health, Care, Membership Organisations
Local Alliances:
Herefordshire Dementia Action Alliance

1. Action Plan

1. The National Dementia Declaration lists a number of outcomes that we are seeking to achieve for people with dementia and their carers. How would you describe your organisation’s role in delivering better outcomes for people with dementia and their carers?

Services for Independent Living (SIL) delivers a highly personalised home support service to a wide range of people, including people with dementia. Our organisation is service user controlled, and our Vision is for disabled people and family carers to be equally valued citizens. 

Our home support service stresses the importance of people with dementia being supported to maintain as much control over their lives as possible. This includes being involved in the design of their service, in the writing and reviewing of their needs assessment and support plan, and selecting their support workers. 

We emphasise the importance of people with dementia remaining connected to their natural networks of family and community, and our support workers help facilitate these connections, as well as helping the individual to make new connections and access new activities that interest them. 

SIL operates a Direct Payments Support Service. This service provides information, advice and training to people using direct payments to employ their own personal assistant. This service enables disabled people to retain and gain control over their life by supporting them to legally and safely recruit their own support staff, who work to a job description and contract that meets their individual support needs.   

2. What are the challenges to delivering these outcomes from the perspective of your organisation? 

A challenge is sufficient funding from the Local Authority to operate a high quality, sustainable, home support service, in the context of cuts to public funds. Increasingly local authorities are capping what they will pay for support, and this puts organisations under pressure to deliver a high quality service at a lower cost, or to subsidise the service from reserves, which is unsustainable. 

Another challenge is recruiting sufficient support workers who share our values and attitudes, for the expanding number of people we support. Good support workers, who understand how to apply their values to deliver truly person centred services in their working practice, are critical to delivery of a high quality service, and there is a national and local shortage of these staff. 

Finally, we need to increase the number of our support workers who have the skills and knowledge to effectively support people with dementia.

2. Actions

  • Recruitment Strategy and Action Plan

    A Recruitment Strategy and Action Plan are tools to enable us to attract and retain high quality support workers. Our plan involves looking beyond the usual routes into employment to find people who share our values and who have transferable skills and / or the ability to learn new skills and knowledge.

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  • SIL is maximising employee retention

    SIL is maximising employee retention through effective engagement with staff and identifying and promoting opportunities for career progression.

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  • SIL is maximising employee retention

    SIL is maximising employee retention through effective engagement with staff and identifying and promoting opportunities for career progression.

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  • Good relationship with the Alzheimers Society

    We have a good relationship with the Alzheimers Society, as one of their employee’s works out of our head office one day per week. This enables us to gain up to date information about activities of interest to people with dementia, and is also a source of training and advice for our staff.

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  • Help people with dementia remaining connected

    To help people with dementia remaining connected to their natural networks of family and community we will develop a set of reminisce tools and techniques for support workers to use with the person they support.

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