A learning disability means someone has lower intellectual ability and might need support with day to day tasks. The level of support someone needs will depend on the severity of their learning disability.
In many cases, the people Avenues supports with learning disabilities have high support needs and are dealing with other issues related to their physical and emotional health. These might include mental health conditions - such as anxiety or depression - physical disabilities, sensory issues or limited verbal communication. We have a long track record of supporting people with complex needs and challenging behaviour that started with the closure of long stay hospitals in the early 1990s.
We work with children and young people, adults and older people, so the circumstances in which we start supporting people vary depending on their situation. Families of children and young people may be looking for additional support to bring a new dimension to their child’s life, or to benefit family life in general. Young people may be transitioning into adulthood and need support to become more independent – for example when leaving the family home or residential education, or starting college or work. We often start supporting adults because they are moving on from a residential or hospital placement into supported living, or because the previous placement has broken down. It isn’t uncommon that we start working with someone because they have reached a crisis point with their current support arrangements.
The settings in which we support someone vary according to their needs. We support people mostly with outreach, in supported living or in a residential setting.
Avenues works in a person-centred way. People’s support is built around them, their needs, and what a good life means to them, using a variety of different approaches and techniques. These include Person-Centred Active Support (PCAS), which means the person we are supporting is engaged as much as possible in every aspect of their life, and Positive Behaviour Support, a way of working that seeks to understand someone’s challenging behaviour so that it can be minimised.
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