Empowerment can look like many different things, in the case of *Alfie, a person we support with autism in North East England, it looks like taking the steps to achieve his full potential through employment. Earlier this year, *Alfie sat down with his support worker and decided that he wanted to work - this became a goal on his person-centred support plan.
*Alfie and his support worker researched various courses which would help him achieve this goal, he found a Workplace qualification through the National Vocational Qualification (NVQ) service. The course which was run by Tesco, took 3-4 months where *Alfie learnt about communication, numeracy, problem solving and working with others. *Alfie now works for Tesco in the Warehouse, driving the forklift. Karen, his support worker tells me “We worked together to utilise his skills to find the right role for him, as his already has a driving license and is very independent, this suited him best”. *Alfie is in full time employment and loves working.
*Alfie, who lives with his uncle was previously thought to have anxiety but was recently diagnosed with Autism in his late 20s, the diagnosis was a relief as *Alfie was finally able to get the support that he needed. Following his diagnosis, *Alfie became quite socially isolated and withdrawn but with the help of his support team and their ‘can do’ approach they found ways to help him increase his confidence and community presence.
Walsingham Support work with local authorities to provide community support, it’s through this that we have had the opportunity to meet *Alfie and offer him help where needed. *Alfie meets with his support worker 3x a week, and now attends day groups, goes swimming and plays pool locally. *Alfie has made tremendous progress from his diagnosis last year to increased confidence and independence, “I feel a lot better, my self-esteem and self-confidence has improved”, *Alfie stated.
We work to go beyond functional quality and aim for happiness when approaching support, thank you for sharing your achievement with us, *Alfie! We look forward to following your journey, supporting you every step of the way.
*person has been anonymised