Cedar Vale - About Cedar Vale
Cedar Vale is an impressive period property, situated on the edge of a picturesque village in its own extensive grounds. The property itself has three communal living areas that allow people to have quiet time or to be in mixed company. Other facilities include a sensory room, garden and an activity room. Everyone has their own bedroom with en-suite facilities and there is extensive outdoor space.
Cedar Vale is situated in a small village and therefore local amenities are within easy reach. Further afield, people can be supported to access the local library, shopping centres, cinemas and swimming pools. People are also supported to visit other local places of leisure and interest should they wish to.
Our goal is to enable people to structure their time, build relationships and establish a balance between therapy, selfcare and leisure as appropriate to their individual needs. Activities depend on individual preferences and can include a variety of community based and educational choices.
Cedar Vale - Family matters
The team at Cedar Vale know that the people we serve are part of an important wider circle of family, friends and networks. We work in partnership with them to ensure we provide the right service for their relative but also to support them in their own right as a family carer. Family carers and important others are encouraged to develop good contact arrangements with staff at Cedar Vale. We look forward to receiving visitors as well as updates from family carers and friends by email, Skype or FaceTime.
Some family carers are involved in the recruitment and interview process for employing staff. This ensures that they have their say about who they think would be able to deliver good support at Cedar Vale.
The Danshell Family Carer Forum is run independently by a group of family carers and there are representatives from every region of the UK. The forum facilitates family carers to ask questions, discuss worries and support one another. It produces a quarterly newsletter which helps families share experiences as well as keeping people up to date with benefit information, legislative changes and relevant Danshell developments.
Cedar Vale - Personal Activities Plan
Cedar Vale has a dedicated activities co-ordinator who supports service users to have individual person-centred plans. The wants, needs and interests of each individual are established through a variety of sources of information and communication with key people.
Service users are supported to participate in social activities that may be of interest to them through the well-established network of community based groups in East Bridgford and the wider Nottinghamshire area.
Stacey - Activity Co-ordinator - Cedar Vale
Working as an activity coordinator at Cedar Vale is challenging yet extremely rewarding. Activities are an important part of a person’s care pathway and provide opportunities for people to express themselves and have experiences which are meaningful to them.
As an activity coordinator it is my job to support service users to participate in and enjoy a wide range of activities. Working with each service user we create a timetable which has a balance of activities The way the timetable is constructed and presented is dependent upon the abilities and needs of the individual. Some service users are able to complete an interest checklist. This identifies key activities that the individual enjoys and how important participation in these activities is to them.
For service users who are unable to verbally express or identify their interests, the occupational therapist and I spend time with the individual trying different activities. I also speak to family and carers to gather information about activities that the service user has enjoyed in the past. Visual aids such as Talking Mats and Social Stories are useful tools in communicating with service users and supporting them to express their wishes and needs.
Each day I offer a group activity within the hospital. These groups include gardening, baking, and arts and crafts. New activities are introduced regularly to promote engagement and interest. Group activities are an important part of my job role as they promote the service user’s awareness of each other as well as relationship building and positive social interactions.
The role of the activity coordinator within any environment is varied and even with the best of plans in place, it is important to remember that as well as being meaningful and outcome based, activity should also be spontaneous and fun. With this in mind, my role each day is determined by those who are at the centre of all we do, the service user, and I wouldn’t have it any other way
Cedar Vale - Positive Behaviour Support
Many of the people we serve at Cedar Vale have behaviours that challenge services. We believe that we have to make a long term commitment to providing the right support for each individual to improve their quality of life. This does not mean that people need to remain in the same place but rather we continue to support them in a person centred way along their care pathway and ensure that what we learn about the person and the best way to work with them, is respected, applied and built on.
Importantly, our way of working supports people to be included in their own communities and promotes choice and control, the development of skills and alternative strategies for coping with challenging situations.
To enable this to happen we implement a range of interventions including:
- Functional Assessment of Behaviour.
- Personal Positive Behavioural Support Plans.
- Individualised activity and skill acquisition programmes.
- Education and employment opportunities.
- Specialist assessments of need and risk e.g. HCR-20.
Cedar Vale - A Safe Place To Be
Our organisation is committed to delivering care and support in a safe, dignified and respectful manner. We have an extensive governance system called ‘Safe, Sound and Supportive’ that monitors individual and organisation performance against a range of safety and outcome indicators.
Using electronic reporting systems we are able to monitor and act swiftly in response to incidents or untoward events. Our systems and structures provide what we believe to be a ‘gold standard’ approach to securing service user safety.
Across all services there is an independent and confidential whistle blowing policy and service for all staff to use if they are worried about service user safety, care and wellbeing.
Cedar Vale - Service User Involvement
We encourage people to say how they feel about all aspects of the service they receive and we give them the tools and support to do this. This includes their views about how we deliver support to them, their care plans and the activities they want to do. This is done by supporting people who would like to be a part of the service user forum at Cedar Vale. Here they can tell us what matters to them, their points and actions are noted, and the manager is made aware. We also support people to attend the regular regional service user forums which are a great way for individuals to meet new people from other services and exchange ideas.
A number of service users have been trained as Experts by Experience or Quality Checkers, their role is part of the Quality Development Review Team who, inspect services to make sure they are good. We also train and support people to be a valued member of the recruitment and interview process in many of our services. We have created policies, communication and measuring tools to enable this to happen across all of our services.
Feedback from the people we serve is vital to making sure we are doing things well. We have post CPA and service user exit questionnaires which are used to support people to do that. Adapted questionnaires are used for people who need support in communication and that way we can be sure all voices are heard and acted upon. All feedback is collated and fed back to the Board.
The advocacy group working at Cedar Vale is called VoiceAbility and everyone we serve has access to an independent advocate.
Danshell is committed to developing services that reflect what the people who use our services and their families tell us is important. This includes ensuring they, their family and carers are fully involved in processes such as the Care Programme Approach (CPA) and in evaluating the service we provide.
Cedar Vale - Staff Support
The people who are supported at Cedar Vale have full access to specialist clinical and therapeutic support. This ensures we are able to deliver creative, flexible and effective responses to meet individual’s needs. Our multiprofessional team includes nurses, support workers, an activity coordinator, speech and language therapist, occupational therapist, clinical psychologist and psychiatrist.
At Cedar Vale, our staff are specially trained to meet a range of health and social care needs including helping people to manage long term conditions such as diabetes and epilepsy. We strive to care for people in the least restrictive way and to adhere to the values and principles of Positive Behaviour Support (PBS). We are also committed to the learning and development of our staff and have created a strategy to reflect the importance of increasing people’s confidence, knowledge and expertise.