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Preparing for Adulthood

Preparing for adulthood

For young people with special educational needs or disabilities (SEND), planning for adulthood begins in Year 9 (the school year in which a child has their 14th birthday), and in some cases will continue until their 25th birthday.  We often call this phase in life 'transition' or a 'transition to adulthood'.

This phase of “preparing for adulthood” is when professionals will consult with you and your son or daughter to consider if they may need specialist support during transition and into adulthood. 

Education Health and Care Plan

If a young person has an Education, Health and Care Plan (EHC Plan) known previously
as a statement of educational needs, they are likely to need extra support in education
which will be discussed and reviewed during their transition. The EHC Plan can be
maintained until the young person concludes their education or is 25 years old,
whichever comes sooner.

Finding somewhere to live

You may decide that you would like to continue to live with your family, and
your family can support this, or you may decide you would like the chance to try
and live independently.

This is not as easy as just finding somewhere to live, there are many things for you and your family to consider.

Independent/supported living

Supported living is a term used to describe the range of services that enable people with additional needs to live as independently as possible in their local community. While supported living is often for people with learning difficulties, it can also help people with mental health problems or physical disabilities.

Supported Living can be provided in either purpose-built or small-scale ordinary housing situations.

You may have already experienced living away from the family home, possibly to attend a residential school or as part of a residential respite short break or taking part in a programme run at your school, college or day service.  But for many people this will be a new experience, along with the expectation that you will have to be much more involved in doing the sort of things that go hand in hand with living independently, such as:

  • Keeping your home clean and tidy
  • Making a shopping list and then doing the shopping
  • Planning your day
  • Any help you require around personal hygiene
  • Safety awareness
  • Social housing

If you want to rent social housing you must register on the Peterborough Homes Choice Based Lettings Scheme first.  If your application is accepted you will be put into a band with people who have similar needs to you and you will be told what type of housing you are eligible to apply for. 

You will only be able to bid on properties that you are interested in and eligible for.

Adjustments to the home

Once you have had a chance to think about what housing type you prefer, you may need to consider whether the property would need to be changed (adapted) to make it easier for you to live in, if you have a physical disability. 

If you do not own the property, permission will  be required from the property owner before any work is approved and undertaken.

A Disabled Facilities Grant may be available to pay for any big changes. You will need to have an Occupational Therapy assessment first to find out what you need.   All Disabled Facility Grants are managed by the Care and Repair Home Improvement Agency who will assist you through the application process

Finding a job

We want to support people with disabilities to find work and to lead independent lives

You can find out more information on our getting into work page.

City College Peterborough

City College Peterborough Day Opportunities Service provides a range of
supported employment services and enterprises run in partnership with adults
with disabilities.

The College Employment Team provides support to gain sustainable work and volunteer placements through their team of experienced advisers, job coaches and support staff.  They help people with learning and physical disabilities, sensory impairment, mental health conditions, autism and long term health conditions.  The pdf below 'Employment Hub' provides more information.

Employment Hub

City College Peterborough’s Digital CV Team provides a unique way for individuals to showcase the skills they possess to potential employers and for voluntary placements. Through the collation of audio and pictures, along with key information about their background, individuals see and discover their skill set through the production of a tailor made Digital Video CV.

A bespoke written CV is also provided, with an embedded hyperlink going straight to their video. They support individuals with any barrier to employment, including learning and physical disabilities, mental health, impairments and anxiety/confidence issues.  For more information please contact:

Andy Jones 01733 797717 ajones@citycollegepeterborough.ac.uk

Transition Planning

Accessing transition support

Young people with a disability aged 14 to 25 and their families can be referred to
Childrens' or Adults Social Care for an assessment of their needs as part of planning
their transitions pathway, if they are not already known to the service through social
care support as a child.

Eligibility for adult care

The Care Act (2014) recognises that for some young people a timely referral to adult social care for an assessment of needs may be required. The law says that this must happen if it would be of “significant benefit’ to the young person. 

Assessment

Generally, in order to determine eligibility for a service from adult social care, information would be gathered about the young person from the age of 14.  Where appropriate, if the child is looked after, has complex needs, lives out of area or has a risk of homelessness, transition assessment will be completd at 16 to ensure care and support are available at 18.  (Adult Social Care assessments won't normally be completed until the young person is almost 18 years old).

The Care Act (2014) says that a young person should continue to receive childrens services even after they are 18, until adult social care assessments are completed and care and support plans, if identified, are in place.

The assessment will be undertaken by the social work team if the young person has learning, sensory impairment and/or physical disabilities, including Special Educational Needs (SEN) Or Education Health and Care Plan.

If young people have a dual diagnosis including mental health needs, the social work team will work closely with health to determine which pathway the young person will follow.

For further information, please contact the council on 01733 747474.

What young people and their families in transition can expect

Every young person with a disability and their parents and carers will be offered information and advice about the range of universal support services available in the local area. This will also include guidance on accessing community and voluntary sector support services.

If a young person with disabilities, young carer or an adult caring for a child (a “child’s carer”) is likely to have needs when they, or the child they care for, turns 18, the local authority must assess them if it considers there is “significant benefit” to the individual in doing so.

In order to determine eligibility for a service from adult social care information about the young person may be gathered from about the age of 14, and where appropriate, an assessment of the young person's needs before the age of 18 can be undertaken in line with adult social care eligibility for care and support.

If a young person is eligible for care and support, further work is undertaken to identify their care needs and develop a person-centred transitions pathway with input from all agencies and family carers. This will determine the best way to meet their care outcomes and achieve their aims and ambitions for living an active and independent life.

Looking after your health

Moving to adult health services

When young people transition to adult health services the aim is to ensure that any
assessment of need is completed as early as possible and enable a seamless move to
appropriate universal and specialist healthcare. Importantly, this includes identifying
services that may no longer be available once someone reaches 18 and putting in place
alternative healthcare support for young people, and their families, to achieve identified
outcomes. 

Customers who receive priority within health service transitions include:

  • young people in receipt of children’s continuing care funding that move to adult continuing healthcare services and funding;
  • young people accessing child and adolescent mental health services moving to adult mental health services; and
  • young people with an Education, Health & Care (EHC) Plan that identifies other health service in order to meet assessed needs and outcomes.

Transition to adult services with continuing healthcare needs

A key aim with transition is to ensure that a consistent package of support is provided during the years before and after the move to adulthood.

The nature of the package may change because the young person’s needs or circumstances change. It should not change simply because of a move from children’s to adult services or a move between organisations with commissioning or funding responsibilities.

Where change is necessary, it should be carried out in a phased manner in full consultation with the young person. No services or funding should be withdrawn unless a full assessment has been carried out in respect of both need for adult health and social care services.

What young people should expect

When a young person in receipt of children’s continuing care reaches the age of 14, the case will be reviewed by a social worker. This ensures that any young person who may require ongoing services in adulthood and who may be deemed eligible for continuing healthcare is identified early and included in the transitions pathway.

When the young person reaches 17 a checklist is completed by a health or social care professional, helped by the use of a screening method called a Checklist Tool. The assessment is done with the young person and their family or carer where appropriate.

Other health services identified in Education, Health and Care (EHC) Plans

There may be other health services that are included within a young person’s Education, Health and Care Plan in order to meet an assessed need. For young people aged 16 years and over (as part of the ongoing review and assessment process to identify health needs) any ongoing health needs will be assessed and work done in partnership with adult health services to identify suitable service to transition to, if available.

Learning Disabilities Annual Health Checks

The Annual Health Check scheme is for adults and young people aged 14 or above with learning disabilities who need more health support and who may otherwise have health conditions that go undetected.

Who will get an Annual Health Check?

People aged 14 and over who have been assessed as having moderate, severe or profound learning disabilities, or people with a mild learning disability who have other complex health needs, are entitled to a free annual health check.  More information about Health Checks can be found on NHS Choices.

Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services

CAMHS stands for Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services. CAMHS are the NHS services that assess and treat young people with emotional, behavioural or mental health difficulties.

CAMHS support covers depression, problems with food, self-harm, abuse, violence or anger, bipolar, schizophrenia and anxiety, to name a few.

There are local NHS CAMHS services around the UK, with teams made up of nurses, therapists, pyschologists, support workers and social workers, as well as other professionals.  In Peterborough this service is provided by Cambridgeshire and Peterborough NHS Foundation Trust.

You can find lots more information on the Young Minds website.

Staying safe in the community

Ensuring young people with a disability remain safe

The government defines safeguarding as:

“The process of protecting children from abuse or neglect, preventing impairment of their health and development, and ensuring they are growing up in circumstances consistent with the provision of safe and effective care that enables children to have
optimum life chances and enter adulthood successfully.”

The 0 to 25 Disability Service works closely with Children's Safeguarding to ensure that young people under the age of 18 remain safe, and for those over 18 the service works within the safeguarding processes under adult legislation. 

Staying safe and supported in the community

For many of us, it can be a real problem if we do not feel safe and comfortable when we are trying to do something.  This is the same when we are trying to get out into the community, we need to feel safe and supported, and this could include simple things like:

  • Plan where you would like go and how you are going to get there
  • Take a mobile phone if you have one, and the phone number of someone you trust
  • Take some money in case you need to make a phone call from a public phone
  • Take only the money you expect to need, keep some in your wallet or purse and some in your pocket
  • If you have one, take a personal attack alarm
  • Are your personal belongings, like your phone, wallet or purse kept in a safe place on you, like your bag or pocket
  • If possible, have you told someone you trust where you are going and when you expect to be back
  • If you can, go out with a friend or someone you know

Social Media

Computers, mobile phones and tablets are a great way to keep in touch with your friends, finding and making new friends and to share things at the touch of a button. You can also use them to find information and to help with homework.  But they can also make it easier for bullies and other people who might want to hurt you to get close to you.  So it is really important that you know how to stay safe on your computer, phone and websites.

The ChildLine and NSPCC websites both have lots of really useful information to help protect yourself from cyberbullying, sexting, inappropriate content and protect your online reputation.  There is also an easy read guide to Staying Safe on Social Media and Online from the Foundation for People with Learning Disabilities.

Safe Place Scheme

The scheme aims to attract Peterborough businesses to agree to place a Safe Place sticker in their window. This identifies it as a place where an adult with a learning disability can, in the case of an emergency, receive help to make a call to the police, other emergency service or to a parent, carer or support worker in their moment of crisis.

The Safe Place Scheme aims to stop the bullying and abuse of adults with learning disabilities across Peterborough.

This scheme is run jointly with the Safer Peterborough Partnership to ensure people with a learning disability remain safe in Peterborough. People with a learning disability have the right to feel safe when out and about in their community. It is a collective responsibility of the community to support vulnerable people.  For people with a learning disability this can be achieved by identifying business premises as a ‘Safe Place’.

In Peterborough over 60 businesses from Bretton Centre, Rivergate and City Centre have signed up to provide a Safe Place to vulnerable people in the city of Peterborough.

A shopkeeper/business was identified through the Peterborough City Council Officer and/or PCSO (Police Community Support Officers) and if they are happy to help, are given a safe place sticker to put into their shop window. An individual with a learning disability / vulnerable person will carry a card displaying their name and personal contact telephone number in order that the manager or member of staff in the shop/business knows whom to contact.

Adults with a learning disabilities (aged 18 to 65 years) who wish to become members of the scheme will need to fill in the application form.

A personalised 'I need help' card is sent out which identifies the person the scheme member would like contacting in an emergency and lists a contact telephone number. They will also be sent a list of all participating businesses in the scheme and a 'Keeping Yourself Safe' leaflet.

The scheme aims to attract Peterborough businesses to agree to place a Safe Place sticker in their window. This identifies it as a place where an adult with a learning disability can, in the case of an emergency, receive help to make a call to the police, other emergency service or to a parent, carer or support worker in their moment of crisis.

By agreeing to be part of this free scheme businesses will be providing reassurance to both users of this service and their carers/friends/loved ones, enabling individuals to be more independent within Peterborough.

All participating retail outlets will be given an information sheet with guidance on how to assist an individual if in distress.

Participating businesses are not expected to have to make many calls, but to provide a temporary safe haven for this very vulnerable group within our community until help and support arrives in the form of the Carer, Police or Support Worker.

To register to be a member of this scheme, either as a business or a person with a learning disability, please contact 01733 452511.  A short film can be viewed here.

Supported Internships

Supported Internships can help disabled young people to get a job.  They are a type
of Study Programme.  What makes them different is that most of the learning is
done at work and some in college.  This means young people can 'learn on the job'. 

You can find lots of useful information on the Preparing for Aduthood website.

City College Peterborough (CCP) and Peterborough Regional College have set up a
Supported Internship programme to help young people with additional needs get into
work.  This programme gives 16-24 year olds with an Education, Health and Care Plan
the opportunity to complete long-term work experience whilst accessing any relevant
courses at college. A Job coach will be assigned and support the student and employer
throughout their placement.

Both colleges currently work with a number business around Peterborough, although they are always looking for new partnerships with local businesses. They recognise that there are many benefits to hosting a Supported Internship, including access to specialist job-matching services, Disability Awareness training, improving image and external reputations and many others.  If you would like further information, please contact:

City College Peterborough

mlock@citycollegepeterborough.ac.uk

Peterborough Regional College

supported.internships@peterborough.ac.uk

Making Decisions and Capacity

The Mental Capacity Act (MCA) is designed to protect and empower people who may lack the mental capacity to make their own decisions about their care and treatment. It is a law that applies to people aged 16 and over.

Examples of people who may lack capacity include those with: 

  • dementia
  • a learning disability
  • a brain injury
  • a mental health condition
  • a stroke
  • unconsciousness caused by an anaesthetic or sudden accident

However, just because a person has one of these conditions does not necessarily mean they lack the capacity to make a specific decision. 

Someone can lack capacity to make some decisions (for example, to decide on complex financial issues) but still have the capacity to make other decisions (for example, to decide what items to buy at the local shop).

The MCA says:

  • Everyone has the right to make his or her own decisions. Health and care professionals should always assume someone has the capacity to make a decision themselves, unless it is proved otherwise through a capacity assessment.
  • People must be given help to make a decision themselves. This might include, for example, providing the person with information in a format that is easier for them to understand.
  • Just because someone makes what those caring for them consider to be an "unwise" decision, they should not be treated as lacking the capacity to make that decision. Everyone has the right to make their own life choices, where they have the capacity to do so.
  • Where someone is judged not to have the capacity to make a specific decision (following a capacity assessment), that decision can be taken for them, but it must be in their best interests.
  • Treatment and care provided to someone who lacks capacity should be the least restrictive of their basic rights and freedoms possible, while still providing the required treatment and care.

The MCA also allows people to express their preferences for care and treatment in case they lack capacity to make these decisions. It also allows them to appoint a trusted person to make a decision on their behalf should they lack capacity in the future.

Who can help with transitions?

There are a wide range of professionals who can help with transitions.  These include:

  • Your family/carer
  • Your friends
  • Your teachers and staff at school or college
  • The Statutory Assessment and Monitoring Officers (SAMS) at the council
  • Social care professionals
  • Health professionals
  • Advocates

You can find out about the different people who can help you on the brochure on the left of this page.

SEND Resources and Training

The SEND Resources and Training page hosts a collection of resources, newsletters and
training opportunities. 

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