Social care

What we said

  • roll out our Future Choices programme to all our residential services across the UK.
  • use this feedback to inform our business plans across the whole organisation
  • set up our new clinical forum, allowing us to build stronger partnerships with other organisations which support disabled people
  • refresh our quality assurance framework to make sure our services are meeting the needs of disabled people in the best way possible
  • continue investing in our properties finding new ways to use the spaces well, and building extra capacity, based on what people need
  • improve our recruitment, retention and support for our most valuable asset — our staff team

What we did

Person who uses our services in their wheelchair

Our social care services have continued to improve throughout the year. As of 31 March 2017, we have 163 services across the UK.

Through our residential services, we support around 3,000 people every day and many thousands more, through our day services and in people’s own homes.

Over 1,400 individuals responded to our customer survey, which we reported on in July 2016. 93% of respondents reported having a better quality of life as a result of our support, and 94% were happy or more than happy with the service we provided.

The various UK regulators rated 87% of our registered services as good or compliant, as compared with a national average of 72%.

We have completed the roll out of our Future Choices programme with 641 residents actively participating.

Nationally, the research found their top priorities were more opportunities to access the local community and greater consistency in staffing, through a reduction in the use of agency staff.

We have responded by reforming our services employment framework for all care staff and increasing frontline pay to boost recruitment and staff retention. We have also introduced new systems to streamline recruitment and to manage better our relationships with agency providers.

The Future Choices programme has been a major consultative exercise with people who use our services. The insights it has provided have played an important part in shaping our refreshed strategic direction, in particular as we extend our participation in communities.

We have strengthened our clinical governance by the appointment of a clinical lead providing external independent expert advice to our head of clinical excellence, who is now responsible for overseeing all clinical practice.

We have established a new Clinical Governance Forum which is driving forward improvements in care across our services, together with a Care Quality Improvement Committee as part of our formal governance structure.

We have undertaken an in depth review of our service quality monitoring and improvement and launched a new Quality Assurance Framework in January 2017. This has provided a new way of inspecting our services and equipped our senior and service managers with better support for their oversight of performance.

We have continued with our property investment to maintain and modernise our residential services and enhance the standard of accommodation we offer.

During the year, we invested more than £9 million to fund both minor and major capital projects across our portfolio.

Dan’s story

Dan EleyDan was a youth charity worker in Colombia. In 2010 he broke his neck and suffered a spinal cord injury while diving into a pond in the Amazon. The accident left him tetraplegic and using a wheelchair.

After intensive hospital treatment, Dan moved to Hydon Hill in Godalming, a Leonard Cheshire home. He lived there for five and half years. This enabled him to begin his physical and mental rehabilitation, and helped him accept what happened and to rebuild his life. Dan has now moved into his own flat in a supported living setting.

Dan’s dream was to return to Colombia one day. He went back two years after the accident and was inspired to start a charity to support children from deprived urban slums to secure apprenticeships. The Dan Eley Foundation now helps young people prepare for work. To date, it has helped over 225 children, with 100 now working in jobs at the company where they completed their apprenticeships.

‘My life has purpose again and the fulfilment that comes from being able to contribute positively towards other people's lives has made me happy.

‘I know it's because of the supporting environment they create at Hydon Hill that I have rebuilt my life from the ashes and discover that, as a disabled individual, there is so much joy and happiness we can experience and so much we can give back.’

— Dan