National Storytelling Week: North East

For Chapter 2 in our National Storytelling Week, we wanted to share some stories from our North East region featuring the people we support.

Highlea: Rock and Roll with Elvis!

Staff and the people we support at Highlea were able to attend an Elvis Presley tribute night.

Maureen Atwill, Stephen Paul and Kevin Blythe from North View, and Alan Battye, Martyn Boyd and Richard Weston from South View were able to go.

Elvis featured image
Great night!

They all had a great time, especially Stephen who met his ‘idol’.

Elvis spent a lot of time serenading them all and even gave them a personalized scarf at the end.

Stephen said this was the best night of his life!



Highlea: Marie celebrates her 78th birthday!

Marie Turnbull, an individual we support at Highlea, recently celebrated her 78th birthday with a tea and cake party.

marie highlea
Marie dancing with staff!

She was really happy to see so many of the staff and people we support attend her party, and she certainly enjoyed dancing and singing along with them.

Julie Cowens, Registered Manager, was delighted for Marie: “Marie has been wanting to have a tea party for her birthday for a long time, so all the staff got together and were able to organise it – happy birthday Marie!”

Your Life Care and Support: Kubix Festival at Herrington Park

Staff at YLCS have been planning what activities they could help Jonathan to attend and after communicating choices with pictures, Jonathan showed a keen interest in a music festival.

Jonathan attended the Kubix Music Festival, where he got to sing and dance to the artists who were performing.

kubix festival
Jonathan had a great time at the festival!

Music is something Jonathan is passionate about, especially as he uses music to help communicate and express himself.

Jonathan had an amazing time and can’t wait to attend his next festival.

A special mention to the staff team at YLCS, who used effective communication and joint working to help Jonathan choose his activity and having such a positive impact on him!



Highlea: Kevin’s visits the shops

Kevin took a trip down to his local supermarket where he completed his weekly shop with the support of his staff.

In the past, Kevin would struggle engaging with any kind of domestic chores, but with patience and support shown by staff, Kevin has started to respond well to staff prompts.

Kevin at the shop
Kevin with his shopping!

This includes doing tasks independently such as washing, tidying his flat and visiting his local shop to purchase personal items, all tasks he previously wouldn’t do without the support of his staff.

His biggest step was visiting ASDA to complete his weekly shop, which included going on the bus and buying items within his £40 budget.

He got what he needed, went to the tills, packed and paid for his shopping coming in under budget and handed the change back to staff.

He even carried all the bags in himself, he expressed how proud he was that he had done this for himself.

Well done Kevin!

Essential Care and Support: Colin the conductor

Colin Heaviside, resident at Ash House, enjoys taking part in a brass band performance once a year.ian craig

The band performs in Middridge, which is a small village not far from where Colin lives.

The conductor gives the baton to Colin, who helps the orchestra follow the same material rhythm.

On the night, Colin dressed up smart and even enjoyed a nice meal after his performance.

Colin is a big music fan and has guitar lessons each week with his tutor, who helped organise for Colin to be part of the brass band.

Essential Care and Support: Tommy’s progress at The Grange

Tommy High has transitioned from hospital into his new supported living surroundings at High View, The Grange.

The transition was a big change for Tommy, but he has done well settling into new surroundings, with excellent support from the staff at Essential Care and Support.

Tommy said: “I have settled really well into High View and get along with all the other residents that live there. I am the oldest from all the residents, but we get along really well as we take part in different activities together and learning things from each other.”

Tommy has been able to build a good relationship with both staff at High view and within The Grange, with many of the staff mentioning how helpful and polite Tommy is with them.

Tommy has made amazing progress

“I try to be as helpful as I can, and ensure other residents are safe and are happy, even if this means just getting a cup of tea or sitting outside in the garden and chatting in the sun.”

Staff have been able to identify signs or issues Tommy has, including his anxiety, and have worked on helping him cope with such issues.

“This is a totally different setting to what I am used to and yes it was hard, and I was nervous moving here but I settled straight away with the help of the staff and the residents.”

Tommy has made all the new residents feel welcomed and has helped them all settle into their new surroundings, as he knows how it feels to move somewhere new and not know anybody.

Essential Care and Support: Ian’s trip to Wembley

Ian Craig has been living at The Grange for five years and is a massive Sunderland fan and has got a season ticket for their home games.

sunderland image
Ian supporting his beloved Sunderland!

He has dreamt of going to Wembley to watch his team play, and when Sunderland reached the League 1 Play-Off Final, his support staff gave him the opportunity to arrange a trip and he jumped at the chance.

Ian was so excited about going and he arranged his tickets and traveled on the supporter’s bus along with other fans and he really enjoyed himself.

Unfortunately, Sunderland lost the final 2-1 to Charlton Athletic, but Ian didn’t let the score get him down, as he said it was the best experience he’s ever had!


Essential Care and Support: Tommy gets involved in training!

At one of the MAPA Training sessions, Tommy asked if he could get involved in the training that was being delivered by Kim Wright, Service Manager and MAPA Training Instructor.

Tommy took part in his first session and he made sure to put staff through their paces, by taking part in all the role play activities to help use techniques around communication to de-escalate behaviours.

tommy training
Tommy really enjoyed taking part in the training!

Kim was so proud of seeing Tommy taking part: “It was wonderful for Tommy to take part as although he was briefed about what was needed, he put his own spin on it and it was great to see how staff responded and interacted.”

We are delighted to see that even the people we support are taking part in training sessions, activte participation is something we have always encouraged and it’s always great when it is done to benefit both staff and the people we support.