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Danshell Learning Disability and Autism Services 

Danshell supports and cares for adults living with a learning disability or autism in specialist hospitals and residential services. Our aim is to deliver effective and outcome based services within person centred, professional care environments. We support individuals with a learning disability, who are on the autistic spectrum or have mental or physical ill health. We set high standards for ourselves in the delivery of care, and most importantly, we put service users at the centre of everything we do.

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Frank's* Journey to Independence


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A young gentleman, Frank*, came to Hope House in 2015, having been in inpatient services for the previous 10 years. Frank* began his transition into Hope House 3 months before the move in date, spending time at his previous service with Hope House staff, as well as coming to Hartlepool on a number of occasions to get a feel for the new service, the staff team and the surrounding area.

Frank* was very excited to live in Hartlepool, as this was originally his home town, and his dream was to live back there. He said, “I am always hoping for something and always hoped to live in this area”. Frank* was very involved in the service before moving in, and his words inspired us so much that we named the service “Hope House” in his honour.

Frank* has a moderate learning disability, complex behaviours, autism, and some health related issues. When he came to Hope House, he was on 2:1 observations, having previously been on 8:1. The staff team at Hope House worked closely with Frank* to improve his communication skills, ensuring that he was able to meet and greet people in an appropriate manner. On a day to day basis Frank* is now on 1:1 observations. He has worked really hard to get to this point and the future is looking positive for him.

One of the main things that the staff team picked up on was that Frank* needed consistency, so they worked with him to create a timetable each week. Every Sunday, Frank* and the staff team spend time talking about his hopes and wishes for the week ahead, which the staff team then compile into his weekly activity timetable.

Frank* has a very active lifestyle, taking part in all the activities that he enjoys, such as going to his weekly activity clubs of daisy chain, table tennis and the catholic club. He is also supported to work at different voluntary jobs of his choosing, such as gardening and litter picking. Frank* appreciates his increased independence and recently went on holiday to Edinburgh. His success in living at Hope House means that wider dreams can now be considered, with Frank focusing on a plane ride as one of his goals for next year!

Frank continues to have family involvement on a weekly basis. He is very keen to attend all of the regional activities, such as the Regional Service User Forum, People’s Parliament, where he can ensure his voice is heard throughout the company.