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Impact of the Real Opportunities Project Dr. Stephen Beyer Dr. Axel Kaehne, Andrea Meek, Claire Pimm Welsh Centre for Learning Disabilities


Background • The Real Opportunities Project set out to offer a comprehensive support model, across 9 Local authorities • It recognises in its services many of the barriers to successful transition identified in research: – Lack of a single source of support for young people and families in a complex systemFamily Support and Transition Key Working – The need for a creative alternative to transition plans- Person Centred Planning – The need for a proactive approach to skill and behaviour- independence training and psychological support – The need for an employment pathway- work experience and employment support – The need for inclusion- Inclusion workers


Family Follow-up Study • Feedback from families as key stakeholders – From those still with young people in school – From those whose young people have left recently

• Sample – Families from nine areas – Current students and leavers – 120 families the target – Data collection on-going- reports on 61 families here

• Method – Telephone interviewing


Where young people are… •

Main destination a college of FE

Just over a quarter of current sample still at school or receiving support at college % of young people

Training Job Other Volunteering Day Centre At home School College 0%

10%

20%

30%

40%

50%

60%

70%


Real Opportunities services • Wide range of services experienced • In addition 90% of our sample were referred to Supported Employment services

% receiving services Other Young Person’s course(s) Parent’s course(s) Person centred planning Independent skills training Social inclusion Peer mentoring Psychological support Family liaison Transition key working 0% 10% 20% 30% 40% 50% 60% 70%


Satisfaction with RO services

Satisfaction

• Overwhelmingly positive satisfaction with services 13 Other support

19 • Small areas of dissatisfaction on Peer Mentoring, Parent’s course YP course 9

Parents course

20

Person centred planning

37

Poor

Social inclusion

33

Satisfactory

Peer Mentoring

6

Good

Independence training

Psychological support

15

Family Liaison

21

Transition Key Worker

37

0%

20%

40%

60%

80%

100%


Most important services • Social inclusion (20%) and independence (15%) most often mentioned • Work experience significant (10%) • 15% said it hadn’t helped or that they had not received anything important

Most important services Accessing a SW Incorporating RO into school life Advice PCP TKW School holiday activities Psychology Help to transition to placement General service Travel training Work Independence skills Social inclusion 0

2

People

4

6

8

10

12

14


Most important service offered…. Inclusion • Help with social interaction and life skills.

• Taking him out, helping with social interaction skills • The inclusion support. • Social side of things. Doesn't think to go into town socially himself. Has enjoyed bowling, cinema.

Independence • Getting him out of the house independently • Work experience has been the best for him - boosted his confidence - gave him ideas about life after school which has been really helpful…

Work experience • The work experience parts working with young people her own age without learning disabilities. She has communicated without using Makaton…

Travel •The travel training plus all the advice we have had. Overall service •Having the back up support, the whole package. •I feel more confident that I am making the right choices as I am informed and can ask someone for more information if I need it. This continues even though he has left school.

Negative comments •None - not really had anything as far as I am concerned, we have had to do everything ourselves, had no input. •The scheme has not really been helpful. •It was more trouble to have these people in the house than cope without.


‌ and why. Team support: For me personally, every time we had a problem picked up the phone and it has been sorted, they are dedicated. No-one else has been there. Work experience: Given confidence, Important to get him out and to mix more, to build his confidence, it did give him confidence, he goes out more, goes on buses, has done this with a group of friends that he didn’t have before, goes to pictures. Transition key worker: It helped us decide what to do and plan our future, plus the support from Y has been a big help to us all and Z as well. It's someone we can call and ask for help and who we knew would support X and help him. What was really good was that it was another young man to talk to. Travel: Learning the bus routes, he is more independent now and happy to go on a set route on his own, but now he goes out with his friends from college on his own. Inclusion: It's been good as each person involved has been easy to get hold of and approachable and X has been happy to go out with them all. It has increased her social life and her confidence.


Views on Transition Key Working Providing information

Negatives- joint working

They were very helpful. This was invaluable in helping us see what options were out there, gave us all support and helped X with his decisions. It helped the whole family.

Insufficient input, lack of understanding of his needs and no time spent on looking at his needs. No one listened to the care staff. They insisted on talking to him alone and he was unable to relay that back to the care staff to follow through.

Person centred Y explained things to me but she also included X as a person rather then a number. The lady put us at ease, she understands X and his needs, nothing was too much trouble for her and she would always give her time. She also involved Z in his school review which had never happened before she really helped him to speak up and have confidence.

Not clear about roles. School was the main provider and it was stressful trying to accommodate RO.


Views on Family Liaison Responsive Any problems we just go on the phone. Faultless, had big problems and they've been great.

Supportive We have seen Y quite a lot, she has helped us all and has given me a LOT of support. Practical arrangements She came out to assess X‌ also got involved in organising transport to college, liaised with LA about transport. ‌there were a lot of things we weren't aware of like careers support and the RO project so he has given us info on all that.

Y an extra supportive voice at meetings when you feel emotional. She was thorough in checking everything with the family and it was nice to have someone to support you when managing so much change. She was always there and sometimes you feel you need some back up.


Views on Social Inclusion Independence

Engaging

Helpful in getting him out of the house more.

Very good, attended swimming club and now competing.

Engaged him in lots of activities around town meeting other people and using public transport with the wheelchair. It was nice for him to do things without me. It gave him a chance to be a man in his own right and not with his Mum. ‌.Helped with confidence although he plays football with Dad at weekends and has a wide social circle. Now doing things independently of the family.

Excellent - got him involved in things he enjoys.

Not everyone takes part Good -they tried but she opted out - did not enjoy it. People tried to include him but he won't get out of the car.


Independence skills training Effective Marvellous, didn't take long. X picked it up quite easily, she (trainer) was good.

Helped with management of personal hygiene issues, alongside health and social services. Someone comes to the house once a week to support this. Not sure exactly what he did, but they trained him to go out walking locally, which was helpful.

Travel 4%

. We were hoping that this might continue to the end of the project. He does come home on the bus independently now.

When she was there she took X out for timetable training, now she knows bus timetables and the money side, she has her own bank account now.

Not working for everyone Think this was meant to happen but it didn't work for him.


Overall impact of Real Opportunities Family views of impact of RO 2% 26% Positive No change Negative

72%


Impacts for‌ ‌Young People I think gaining self confidence and independence. Leaving school he was very nervous and not really communicating with people but now his social development and confidence have increased. Y has been great, as was Z who did the travel training. Gained confidence from work experience.

Mixing with people, she never mixed with anyone, it has brought it out of her, she gets on with anybody now, best thing that's happened.

‌Families (about half) That I know there is always help on hand, it is like a lifeline for me. Would have been lost with some of the things without them, like them supporting us to visit the college. When he is out on activities the family get a break, gives family a breather from constantly checking on him. Been great because there is nothing else available, before you were on your own, nobody to help you. Knowing the support was there if needed. Will be a loss when no longer there.


Employment support provided Participants+

• Participant caseloads – Mencap*- 187 – Remploy/NAS*- 38 – Elite- 333

• Work experiences

51%

– Mencap- 144 – Remploy/NAS- 19 – Elite- 410

• Qualifications – Mencap- 43 – Remploy/NAS- 9 – Elite- 226

• Jobs – Mencap- 1 – Remploy/NAS- 3 – Elite- 21

• Employers engaged:

25% 20% 15% 10% 5% 0%

– 400+

* Nov 2013 + Elite & Mencap data only

49%

Male Female

Age 21 20 19 18 17 16 15 14


Employer views of workers -SE Study • Employer feedback (113/134) • Hire: Another person with LD?- √ (100%) This person LD if £ allowed- √ (83%)

• Business outcomes Productivity other staff- √ (50%) Staff attitudes - √ (65%) Diverse workforce- √ (54%) Public image- √ (77%) Customers- √ (65%)

Satisfactory

Appearance Rel: Supervisor Rel: Co-workers Productivity Breaks Interest Tasks Initiative Work Quality Work Quantity Punctuality Attendance Instruction Safety Rules Working Skills 0% 20% 40% 60% 80% 100%


Views of Young PeopleSE study • Support? They gave me confidence, it was weird at first meeting the job coaches, but they were nice and friendly.”

• 23 young people attended work experiences:

School assistant Farm Pet sanctuary Office Charity shop Factory Hairdressers Decorating Car valet Pets Hotel Pub Shop/Supermarket Nursery Café Delivery Tyre company

“They were really helpful, they were there to support me.”

“Thank you for giving me the opportunity. If I had the chance to do it again I would.” 0

2

4

6

8

10

12


Employment- previous outcomes • 4/25 YPs had paid work and 1 volunteered: – 3 got it through a work experience – All felt they’d had enough support (one from a Hub) – Four people had 1 morning or afternoons work, one had 2 full days. – They all got on with their coworkers

• Outcomes? “Very good, pay was good.” “All the people are lovely, I am part of the team and I join in all the activities like quiz nights they hold.” “Money.” “Fun, we all had fun.” “It's wonderful cause I have dinner up there as well, I enjoy it”


Views of Young People • What next?: • In the future?:

– College or a paid job?Other Stay mostly at home

– 23 said a paid job

Attend a College of Further Education Get a paid job evenings or weekends Get an unpaid job Get a Paid job Attend a Day Centre 0

2

4

6

8

10

12

14


Shift in views of employment -Family follow-up study

Yes • Past/Now Before and After: | Yes No DK

No

DK

22

1

1

12

11

6

2

2


Shift in views of employment -Family follow-up study Before and After: • Past/Now Yes Stable majority No view employment DK |as a possible option Yes

22

1

1

12

11

6

No DK

2

2


Shift in views of employment -Family follow-up study Before and After: • Past/Now Yes A shift towards No employment DK as an |option Yes No DK

22

1

1

12

11

6

2

2


Shift in views of employment -Family follow-up study

Yes No Before and After: Still some undecided • Past/Now Yes

22

1

1

12

11

6

No DK

DK

2

2


Jobs: Did RO change their view? • Of those that changed their mind from “No” to “Yes” or “Don’t Know” all said that RO had made a significant impact on changing your view in this matter. He is a different boy to what he was, he is more confident than he has ever been, happy to go out, has made friends which he hadn't before. More hopeful that with the support she would be able to do something but it's down to resources in the future. Knowing he enjoyed the work experience makes me feel more positive. X is a home girl, when we spoke to the school they said she would need adult supervision constantly but now Mencap worker takes her she works independently.


Jobs: Barriers to sons & daughters Availability of Support Having the support, couldn't do it without having someone with her all of the time. She would be capable of doing basic work but would need someone supervising her.

Good job match For X it's getting work that he can do, where he just gets on with it and doesn't have too much interaction with others. He is quite "rigid" so that’s a personal barrier for him.

Support for the person’s behaviour Temper tantrums He struggles to take criticism, have to tread on eggshells, he can take things the wrong way, he does not like being told what to do well….


Jobs: Key steps to move forward For parents, it’s all about the right support Support to help her find and stick at a job.

Possibly support in the workplace. Having an understanding employer. Needs flexible working. Earnings as a motivation. Support worker to help him. Someone to support him so that employer would have more awareness of his behaviour.


Conclusions • Outcomes differ with area- relationships and phased start a factor. • Post-school, on-going support with planning and issue.

gaining opportunities remains an

• Significant impact of social inclusion work. • Having someone to support in transition planning generally, family liaison and transition key working, is appreciated by families. • Travel training is having a particular impact on families and young people. • There remain some problems in joint working with some schools and other providers on specific issues and particular young people.


Conclusions • Large numbers of work placements had been delivered and some paid jobs had also been found. • Overall, young people and employers were strongly positive about the Real Opportunities project, the role of supported employment within it. • Job coaching availability is an important factor for young people, families and employers. • Funded pathways to jobs with support are still difficult to find after school.


Thank You Dr. Stephen Beyer Welsh Centre for Learning Disabilities Cardiff University beyer@cardiff.ac.uk Tel: 02920 687206

8 real opportunities evaluation steve beyer  
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