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We’re proud of our successes

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SUCCESSES

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The ubu way 

Perhaps one of greatest skills at ubu is that we are great listeners and by active and careful listening we truly understand why each of us ‘do what we do’, the issues, challenges, hopes and dreams of those we serve, from this precious information we can tailor a bespoke plan for every individual that will truly enable them to realise those goals, aims and aspirations.

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SO HOW DO WE ACHIEVE THIS?

We bring together a multi-disciplinary team for every individual that we serve, these teams include experts and therapists with the range of skills to help and support each individual, this is of huge importance if individuals have complex mental health conditions, learning disabilities, personality and behavioural disorders. 

This carefully tailored support will enable those we serve to live as safely, independently and as happily as possible within their own community. 

East Midlands

Andrew

 

Hi, my name is Andrew.

I used to live with my parents, along with my brother and my sister.  My mum and dad died, suddenly in a short space of time.  When they passed, I went to live at my first support.  From there I moved to another with three other residents. With the support of ubu staff, I learnt new skills, got a job and got involved in the community I lived in. 

As time went on and I became more confident, I discussed with my enablers my dreams about wanting to move into a flat of my own. The dream didn’t take long to materialise, as I moved in January.

I loved my new space, as it was all mine; however, like all new flats, I did think it was very bare and all the walls were painted too white. So I decided to get busy! My support staff went with me while I chose all my own wallpaper and paint to make my apartment more homely. They helped me choose new bedding, pictures and lamps in my favourite colour green. It’s a beautiful change, and I feel so much happier in my home now that I had put my own stamp on it. My sister thinks it is wonderful that I have my own place at last, where I can open my own front door and have staff to support me to learn new skills and to find new activities. The next step for me is to find a new job.

Not wanting to stay still for long, I have been learning about healthy eating and how to cook my own meals. My ubu support staff has just helped me find a cookery course for beginners. It’s not segregated, but for anybody that wants to learn to cook. I am really excited as the first thing I did was to bake some delicious bread. Cooking and baking are things I have always wanted to do and I really enjoy it. And I think I am good at it too. MOVE OVER, GORDON RAMSAY!

Charlotte

Hi everyone, Charlotte here. If you know me you’ll know that I love being active and getting involved in activities that mean I can be out and about.

 

At a recent review meeting I discussed this point with ubu and asked if we could look at my options for doing more in my community. We agreed that the best idea would be to see if there were any local volunteer opportunities.

 

I was supported to make an appointment with the Volunteer Bureau where I talked about my interests so that they could hopefully offer me some options of work available that would suit me best.

 

It wasn’t long before I was offered a role delivering leaflets about neighbourhood watch meetings and emergency services on behalf of the local police force. This is something I really enjoyed as it means I am active and helping my local community! I would advise anyone interested in voluntary work to get in touch with your local Volunteer Bureau as they have lots of options available and are really friendly and helpful.

 

My next plan is to see if I can find a role that will allow me to work with horses. I’m sure I will achieve this goal soon and will keep you posted with my progress!

Emma

Hello, I’m Emma and I’ve recently seen many changes in my life that have had a huge positive impact. The first of these was that in February I moved into a new house, sharing with 4 other ladies who are all brilliant!

 

We are all firm friends and love doing different things together. There is even another lady called Emma in the house, so as you can imagine there is sometimes a bit of confusion!

Having had a goal for some time to be healthier and more active, I decided that now was the right time to get going! After all I had a new house, so why not a new me?! So with support from ubu I joined a slimming club and a local gym to make the most of my free time.

 

I have been really active ever since! I have concentrated hard on making healthy food choices to go along with my fitness regime and it has definitely paid off. The result? I have lost nearly 3 stone! My mum is so proud, as am I.

June

Hi. My name is June.

My partner John and I spent many wonderful years together, surrounded by family, and friends. We had a happy, active social life in and around the Lincoln area. We shared a house filled with laughter and an extensive Elvis Presley collection. Everything was going well, and I was content with my life.

 

At the beginning of 2013 though, things started to go wrong. First, I became ill and was later diagnosed with breast cancer. I underwent major surgery and chemotherapy. It was an extremely difficult time. But worse still, at the same time my John also became ill and sadly passed away in November of that year. This left me not just grieving for my life partner, but ultimately homeless due to circumstances beyond my control. I felt I lost everything.

 

As I have mild learning difficulties, Social Services arranged a temporary placement into a residential care home. This wasn’t the most suitable situation; but, with no other options available at the time I had no choice but to move in. Living at the care home made me anxious, unhappy, and feeling trapped. I was desperate to have my own home once again and to build some sort of life without John. This is when ubu came to help.

 

ubu met with me in January, helped assess my needs, and asked me what I wanted to happen to make my life better. It was difficult to fully express my sadness and feeling of loss, but they understood, and put a plan of action in place to help me rebuild.

I received the keys to my new flat on 24th March 2014. Assisted by my Care Manager, ubu’s enabling team moved all my belongings -- including hundreds of items of my precious Elvis memorabilia -- into the flat. I had my own little place again, but something was still missing.

After several weeks of settling in, we took some flowers to John’s grave. This helped me to open up and to speak about him more and more. Soon after, I was asking for support to visit my family and friends again.

My enablers felt I needed to find other positive experiences, not only to encourage me into enjoying and socialising again, but to enhance my new life. They approached local shops on my behalf looking for any voluntary employment. This was successful and resulted in my attending an interview supported by the team. I got the job working at a charity shop two days a week, helping people with mental health issues. Life is changing back for the better. My sister and family have been round for Sunday lunch, but now it’s an early night ready for work Monday morning.

Now remember the Elvis bit? There is a gentleman in our Nottingham service who is equally obsessed with Elvis.  So the ubu teams in Lincoln and Nottingham arranged for us to meet up and have lunch together. We have lots to talk about… pictures, DVDs, outfits, both of our flats full of Elvis! Just this week, I went to an Elvis tribute night in Lincoln supported by ubu. It was great fun.

How life can change in such a short time: new home, new friends, new job, and (fingers crossed for) a clean bill of health.  Thank you, ubu enabling team, for helping me to make it happen.   

Kevin

Hi. My name is Kevin. One day when I was out in town, I noticed that a new shop was opening very close to where I live. I talked to my ubu enablers about how much I would like to find something to do during the day so I’m not bored and so that I can do something for people around me.  They helped me to complete an application form applying for a therapeutic role at the new shop.

 

I had worked before in a shop, working really hard, really enjoying my time there and so it was easy to get a good reference from them and successfully complete the application process, although it was somewhat nerve racking but my enabling team guided me all the way through.

 

The shop manager said she was very impressed by my application form and invited me to have an interview with her which went very well.  I like my job at the shop so much that I was asked to do more hours and help there three days a week. I enjoy walking to work each day, popping home for my lunch before returning again. This position is probably the best one I’ve had, and I’m very happy to bring my experience to this post.

 

I’ve learnt a whole new set of skills especially how to keep things organised and efficient. They will help me when I’m at home to keep safe and healthy, as well as in the future for my next job, I’m on my own career pathway now! Every day I’m out at work I feel that I doing something good and useful. It’s made me feel that I have a place to be and where I can meet new friends.

Lynne

I went to live in a registered support after living at home with my mum for 56 years. I knew that this support would be temporary and that all of the customers who live there would be moving on to the apartments service model, where I would have my own home. During my time living in the group support, my staff team enabled me to build on my daily living skills and prepare for living independently. My mum had done most things for me in the past and I didn't think I was able to achieve these skills. With consistent support and encouragement from ubu, I have now successfully moved into my own apartment. I love my new apartment.

I can now make myself breakfast, light snacks and drinks and do my own washing up. I have had lots of visitors and I have made new friends with those who have also moved into neighbouring apartments. I am starting a craft making course on Tuesday, where I can also meet new friends that I can invite round to my apartment for a drink and chat. I feel far more confident and happy and never ever believed that I would have my own place — and that it would be so nice! Mum would be proud. I am so happy that I made the decision to stay with ubu.

Michael, Lincoln

Michael has lived in Lincoln for a number of years with support from ubu. When he first moved into his own place he was understandably nervous, but soon found that with support he was able to settle into his new surroundings and new lifestyle.

After a few months, and following a series of personalised review meetings, it was established that Michael had a deep love for music and playing the guitar. Knowing that he wanted to actively pursue this further Michael began to research local tutors with a view to booking some 1 to 1 lessons.

Michael soon found the ideal candidate; an experienced guitarist called Carl, who offers guitar lessons from his house which is only a few miles from where Michael lives and is easily commutable using public transport.

So it was all set and the first lesson was booked. The fantastic news is that it went brilliantly! Michael is now hooked for life. His love for his guitar has grown more than anyone could imagine and his confidence levels have risen dramatically. In fact he can now often be heard singing and jamming around the house.

The lessons are still continuing and are a regular feature in Michael’s busy lifestyle. The benefits have been huge, not only from a musical standpoint, but also because Michael’s skills in commuting and using public transport have grown substantially. That’s a result worth singing about!

Roger

I used to live with my Mum but she developed dementia and could no longer look after me. I have Down’s Syndrome and some learning disabilities. So about two years ago I moved to my own home enabled by ubu.

I used to be a really happy person and chat to everyone, I was a real “wind-up merchant” too; but that all changed when my Dad passed away. I know all my friends were confused about what had happened to me. I stopped being the bright, ‘cheeky’ individual they all knew and became withdrawn and stopped talking for seven years after my Dad died.

 

I could understand exactly what people were saying but I was simply no longer able to talk. I just shook my head. My lovely brother and sister-in-law got really upset because sometimes I would cry but couldn’t tell them what was wrong. I felt so frustrated by it too. 

The ubu enabling team who supported me when I moved into my own home, were eager to help and encourage me to find a way to communicate with my own words again and be happier in everything I do. I started to go to a speech and language therapist and began to use easy-read visual communication books so I could tell people what I wanted to do next. They had pictures which I could point to when I wanted to say something or when I needed to choose between things. It really helped me to start expressing myself and my choices again.

Although everyone was keen to hear me chatting again nobody rushed me. People talked to me but they understood that I need time and encouragement and they weren’t annoyed if I didn’t talk back. 

After six weeks of this gentle therapeutic treatment I surprised everyone, myself included, by saying “no” during a conversation with someone in my house. Although she was thrilled she didn’t make a big thing of it and just kept talking.  Before long the word was out that Roger had spoken!

Three months later I was talking every day. Nothing major, just single words, responding to people when they talked to me, saying “yes” and “no”, but it was a start. I think that it was a big step forward.  I didn’t even need to keep going to speech and language therapy because I had made such great advances myself along with the love and support I had from everyone around me.

As I started to talk again the ubu enablers and my friends kept asking me questions so they could help me to find my own voice to say what I wanted.  After a while we all agreed that it would be even better if I stopped just answering “yes” and “no”.  I tried to say what I wanted for my tea from a choice of two different meal

Sarah

My name is Sarah and I moved into independent supported living in October. Because of ubu’s ‘This is Me’ process, involving my family and care managers, the goals I set for myself and the level of support I wanted were clear from the start. Over a transitional period, I met all the staff and residents at my own pace, and was able to take part in activities both at home and in the community. The day of the actual move to the support went so smoothly then, that I quickly settled in and am already working towards reaching my goals.

Working with my ubu team has taught me that participating in community life and making positive contributions actually enables me to build skills and fulfil my dreams quicker. I already have a job at a local work placement, where I help make farm fences and sheds which are then sold on and even erected by ourselves.  I also make craft articles for a local shop in the market place, but ……..my heart and passion has always been around working with animals. I raised this at my review and ubu have supported me to become a volunteer at an animal rescue centre. 

 

At the moment, I am looking after the rabbits and cuddling the cats on Saturday mornings, which is a dream job. Soon I hope to start walking the older dogs that tend to be long term residents at centre. I need to build on my confidence so that I can work with the horses. I also want to increase my volunteer time, contributing 1 or 2 more days a week. As I am growing more and more independent and feel more confident with each working day, I know it won’t be long.  Helping me along is the feedback I get from my employers and friends. I have had comments that my passion towards my role and commitment is second to none.

These experiences show me that, with a little support and lots of heart, I turn my dreams into realities.

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Why not, sit back and read more about some of our great successes.

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