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Preparing for Adulthood - Friends, Relationships & Community

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. 

Parents have asked for a comprehensive guide to transitions and we have worked with Family Voice to produce the Transition to Adulthood - A Parents Guide, which you can find on this page.

5 Tips if you are looking to go to University

These tips have been sourced from a blog by HHannah Louise.  The Blog is on the Council for Disabled Children website. 

"Hi, my name is Hannah Louise! I am 18 years old and have just completed (very successfully) my A-levels. In September I started my university course; I am studying to become a primary school teacher in Sheffield and loving it!"

My top five tips for people with disabilities and special educational needs (SEN) when starting uni!

1.) When applying to university make sure you go as many open days as you need! It will help you to understand course in more depth and can allow you to evaluate if you believe that this is the course for you. More information prevents anxiety.

2.) Make sure that you apply for Disabled student support. It is really helpful and allows for all reasonable adjustments to be considered and may be accepted. It has helped me mounds and mounds. It is one of the most important of my tips.

3.) Make sure that the university is accessible for you and that you will be able to travel around the university, visit as much as you can and try to find the less busy routes to places where you need to go, this allows you to travel quicker without feeling intimidated or overwhelmed.

4.) Make sure if you’re travelling:

  • You do travel training to make sure that you know when the quieter trains are and how to get to and from uni.
  • You apply for a disabled students railcard or bus pass to save your money and thus are able to fund other needs.
  • Have strategies in place when things don’t go to plan to avoid stress and anxiety.

5.) Have fun, work hard and be better than you could ever think. Remember to put effort in and also have fun, try to socialise as much as you can and prove people you are better than they ever imagined. Why prove you’re the same when you can improve and be a better person?

Your disability does not define you, there is ability on disabled people we just need a little support. YOU ARE CAPABLE OF AMAZING THINGS. Keep on going and you will do great!

Transition Planning

Young woman in a wheelchair

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.

Staying safe in the community

Young woman working in a shop

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 circumstance 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.

YouTube Kids

A world of learning and fun, made just for kids

You Tube Kids has been created to make it safer and simpler for children to explore the world through online video – from their favourite shows and music to learning how to build a model volcano (or make slime), and everything in between. There's also a whole suite of parental controls, so you can tailor the experience to your family's needs.

Kiddle

Kiddle is a Safe visual search engine for kids

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.

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