How do you support individuals with death and bereavement? During my time working for Sense, I’ve gained a lot of experience supporting people with complex communication needs, but also learned a lot about how we can approach this often sensitive subject.
Many disabled people rely on the support of their families. Family members play a key role in their care and often become experts. However, there is much concern over what happens as those family carers get older. What happens when family carers are no longer able to support their loved ones?
Yesterday, we hosted a Sports Summit at the iconic Lee Valley Velodrome. This event provided an opportunity for people from the sport and health, and social care sector, to come together to hear about the what we’ve learned from our two year Sport England funded project, Sporting Sense. It was fantastic to see such a mix of organisations who all share a passion for making sport more inclusive and accessible to disabled people.
Volunteering on a Sense Holiday is an unforgettable experience. Not only did I make friends with Jai, an amazing kid I supported to have a brilliant holiday, but I also became friends with like-minded volunteers like Jonny, who was also there to support disabled children with complex communication needs.
A brand new disability arts festival called Sensibility is coming to Birmingham this weekend. As a dance teacher who has worked with Sense Arts for five years, I’m really excited to be leading a choreographed dance, movement and story session this Friday 18 May and Sunday 20 May, at Sense’s TouchBase Pears multipurpose venue.
I’m a visually impaired mixed and multimedia artist working with Sense to support people with sensory impairments to produce art for a brand new disability arts festival called Sensibility, happening this Friday, 18 May.
Through art, I want to elevate the importance of all of the senses. I myself, exhibit my artworks nationally and internationally, but I also work on making more accessible sensory and tactile works, and smaller sculptures too.
If you ask any of my colleagues at Sense what drives them, they will tell you how important inclusion is, and how we can ensure on a daily basis that no one we support is left isolated, alone or unable to fulfil their potential.
At Sense we pride ourselves on being communication experts. By unlocking barriers to communication, we ensure everyone enjoys meaningful lives – and this applies equally, both to the individuals we support, and our staff and volunteers. That’s why, as part of our Equality and Diversity Week this week at Sense, we’re proud to be launching an online learning module so all our staff can learn British Sign Language (BSL).
Today sees the publication of a report by the Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC), following their inquiry into the availability of housing for disabled people. It highlights a ‘housing crisis’ caused by the lack of accessible and affordable homes, delays in installing home adaptations, and a general lack of support to enable disabled people to live independently.
The impacts of this can be wide ranging and affect independence, employment, relationships, health and social care needs, and more. Many of the findings in this report echo the experiences of families we spoke to as part of the research by Sense for our When I’m Gone campaign.
There was a new appointment in Government last week, an important one for disabled people with complex needs.
James Brokenshire became the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government. We’re calling on him to ensure disabled people with complex needs have appropriate and timely arrangements for their future care in place, and to help provide the peace of mind that families need.
Describing himself as having “local government… in the blood”, Mr Brokenshire said he looked forward to working with councils to deliver quality public services and build strong integrated communities.