Thursday, 10 July 2014

Thank you Community Contacts - Inveraray


A big thank you to Becs ,Simon and all today at the Community Contacts event in Inveraray 
I had a wonderful day today 

Look out next week on our Dementia Carer Voices site for more about today and the pledges 

Traveling home now feeling inspired by the people   and surroundings 

Thank you for the kindness  



With great thanks to Becs Barker, Community Project Manager, Community Contacts, Argyll and Bute ( Carr- Gomm for the kind invite to speak at the Community Contacts event Carr -Gomm are hosting at the Loch Fynne hotel Argylle and bite July 23rd 

I met Becs a few months back when I was a guest speaker at the Caring Connections event 

Looking forward to attending ,learning meeting new friends and speaking

You can get more info on community contacts below

Co-Production- What’s My Story?

Community Contacts works within Argyll communities. Our aim is to raise awareness of, and access to Self-Directed Support (SDS) - and that’s to a wide audience- individuals, families, friends, carers, community members and colleagues within care and support settings.
Our aim is to link people together on their SDS journey. Volunteers will becentral members of our team and these people will come from the communities we work within. Through knowing our communities; being aware of each other, neighbourhood facilities, community groups and wider connections our aim is to support people build natural connections and grow their own circle of support. ‘Real wealth’ is a key change embraced by the self-directed support movement- it means more than just money- self-directed support isn’t just about budgets, but how we access all the other aspects of life- our gifts, skills, relationships and how we fit into the world, how we contribute and how we are accepted. This tests our thinking and invites us to work in new and exciting ways together. Volunteers are invited to join us from all walks of life and mightinclude people with ‘lived experience-’ through sharing stories and developing peer support we work towards people having opportunity to share what works in life and how to be included.
Partners from independent, health, council and voluntary organisations are also members of our communities. Community Contacts strives to build links with people who represent these organisations- this helps us present a more accurate picture to the people we support on their SDS journey. It also means we can join networks to ensure that together we work to our strengths and support each other.
Embarking on an ‘SDS journey’ is a big thing. SDS brings about a cultural shift in how we think about, and, open up opportunities in how people might meet their individual needs and therefore their outcomes. If we consider this for ourselves for a moment we might start to realise how it might be for people- the opportunities it brings along with the anxieties present for some. Our aim is to give people all the time they need to explore their options; to offer person centred planning to allow people time and space to ‘play around’ with ideas. Our staff and volunteers are able to offer as much time as is needed to build rapport and to think about the opportunities and any restrictions that might be present. We don’t aim to take over from the work of the social work department, buthope to enhance it by working together with the added benefit of time and relationship building with a volunteer.
Our team offers information and support to explore all available possibilities. This might include finding out about ‘buying in’ a service from a support provider to thinking about purchasing equipment and resources. Equally we aim to work with people to make lives richer by accessing things that don’t cost money, or require little finance- like becoming part of the community. Some people may choose to continue having their support in a traditional way and this will also be supported and respected.

Community Contacts provides independent support, advice and information about self-directed support with people in Argyll. Self-directed support is a new way people with social care needs can have more choice and control in how their support is organised and managed. It is a big step because it embraces our human rights and the desire for all people, including those with disabilities, to live full and included lives. Community Contacts is currently hosting their first Big Volunteer Welcome. We want our new volunteers to feel and be included and valued members of our team. We are working hard to build good rapport between each other and to learn together about the importance of good relationships- we think that if we can value each other in this way we will be better placed to do the same with the people we support. The Community Contacts Team is ready to offer a listening ear and to help in any way we can to support individuals, families, friends and communities to get the best out of Self-Directed Support


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