(Shared Thinking & Empowerment Programme Case Studies)
Names have been changed from case studies below for confidentiality purposes
Paul is a 65 year old man who lives in very Sheltered Housing with care within Dundee. Paul is interested in collecting model cars, football and watching Thriller DVDs.
It was made clear by those involved in Paul's care that he had profound learning difficulties and was deemed very vulnerable. From the moment we approached Paul he was keen to take part, stating that he doesn't have many things to fill his day and that he would like to find a few activities that will keep him busy.
Since this group has begun we have seen great actions being fulfilled, not just with Paul but with all his fellow participants too. In particular the financial planning module shone light on the fact that Paul has had some issues with his financial stability. This module gave him the chance to talk about things he has already learned in regards to budgeting and he was able to give other participants good advice with the issues they were having
However, it soon became apparent that he was having some on going issues with the IV licensing company. He explained that he had been getting reminder letters for months but had been putting them
in the bin, stating; "it's really getting me down." Through support from the group, facilitator and action learning process Paul was able to gain the courage to speak to Wardens about his problem and by thenext week he had a standing order set up and was feeling really optimistic and relaxed about his finances again.
Since he managed to tackle his first action with a great effort he has been keen to take weekly actions to improve his health and wellbeing. Likewise, STEP facilitators are enabling him to look at volunteer options that may be available to him as he stated in the mental health module he wanted to be more involved in his community, We have sign posted him to other projects as well as advising him that he can be involved in other STEP workshops in the future as a helper if he wished we would enable and support him to do this.
Sarah is an 83 year old woman who lives in within Dundee.
Sarah was very quiet at the first couple of pods and would need a little encouragement to speak within the group but after a couple of pods she was able to contribute to discussion without aid. By the fourth pod we witnessed an amazing breakthrough with Sarah as she began to share some personal experiences and indicate that she had never spoken with anyone about these issues that she has been having.
The pod instantaneously provided support to Sarah, offering kind words and reinforcement that the group is there for her if she ever needed to talk to anyone. Sarah had illustrated on many occasions that she feels that there is great trust within this pod and that coming along to the sessions has really helped her come out of her shell and gain confidence.
Since, Positive Steps have provided Sarah with extra information support on self esteem and confidence so she now feels she can assert herself more to be involved. Furthermore, since Sarah has gained a great deal from the workshops we will hopefully be continuing to support her once the 9 week session is over. This will be utilised through the continuation of our 'buddy' service to enable Sarah to access other community activities as she has expressed an interest in other things she may enjoy if we could provide a befriender
Fiona is a 75 year old woman who lives independently within Dundee and has lived in Dundee for the majority of her life.
Fiona was the first participant the STEP College approached and within her meet and greet session it was clear that she had recently started feeling quite isolated from her community as a close friend of hers had passed away within the last few months. It is clear that Fiona is a very strong individual and seems to be coping with the changes within her life well, thus encouraging and providing great support for other participants.
However, in regards to the Effective Communication module it became clear that Fiona has been worried about the standard of her hearing but has lacked the confidence to approach an audiologist about it. Furthermore, when carrying out the Diabetes module Fiona mentioned that she had never had a diabetes test or had her eyes tested. She was able to set three actions for herself within the space of two weeks.
In regards to getting her eyes tested she was supported and reassured by another participant that these tests are hugely important as this participant has and continues to have treatment in regards to diabetic related cataracts. The whole pod has helped Fiona to gain the confidence to get these tests done so much so another participant got tested for diabetes with her and fortunately all tests came back with positive results.