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CQC rates Avenues supported living service outstanding in all areas – a first in England

An Avenues supported living service is the first of its kind to be rated outstanding in all five areas inspected by the Care Quality Commission.  Avenues is also the first adult social care provider in the South East to achieve this distinction. 

Avenues South East Supported Living provides support to over 80 adults and young people with learning disabilities, physical disabilities and mental health needs in their own homes across Kent, Medway and Surrey. The Care Quality Commission (CQC) has rated the service as outstanding in all five domains of its inspection, which look at whether a service is safe, effective, caring, responsive and well-led.

The CQC inspection found that the service provides outstanding care and support to people, providing opportunities to live fulfilled and meaningful lives regardless of complex needs. Individuals who are supported by Avenues are encouraged to challenge their potential and live independently, accessing their local community and achieving their goals.

Avenues employees were acknowledged for going the extra mile to provide compassionate and enabling care, ensuring that people are safe whilst also making the most of their independence. People were found to be involved in planning their support and received a service that was based on their personal needs and wishes. The service was flexible and responded positively to changes in people’s needs. Individuals and their support teams are matched according to shared interests, enabling Avenues employees to develop meaningful relationships with people based on common interests.

The report gives examples of individuals who have been able to improve their quality of life with support from Avenues. For instance, employees and healthcare professionals have supported one person to be free of anti-psychotic medication for the first time in 15 years. This has improved the quality of life for the person and has enabled them to enjoy more community activities such as going to the cinema. Another individual was matched with a support worker who was a keen cyclist and together they have participated in a 50-kilometre bike ride to raise money for charity.

Dan Gower Smith, Regional Manager for Avenues South East said, “Receiving a rating of outstanding in all five domains isn’t only because of the amazing work of our front line staff and service managers. It’s also due to the joint working and support from the team secretaries at our office, the support from colleagues in central functions and our work with external organisations.”

Steve James, CEO of Avenues, said, “Our employees work hard every day, whatever their role, to make sure people are safe and supported, but also that they have a good time. I am immensely proud of what we achieve and am delighted that our work has been acknowledged by CQC in this way. I am particularly pleased that CQC has recognised the values that underpin the work we do at Avenues.”

The full report is available on the CQC website.