Supporting Neuro-Divergent Children and Young People and Their Families – a conference for Shropshire social care teams.
On 28th November PACC facilitated a conference for Shropshire social care teams looking at how to support neuro-divergent children and young people and their families. The conference was funded as part of the Autism in Schools project, by theNHS Shropshire, Telford 7 wrekin Integrated Care Board.
While the Autism in Schools project started with a focus specifically on those with Autism only, the learning from the project is applicable to all those who are neuro divergent, including those living with a Learning disability, ADHD or any neurological difference and who may find themselves at odds with how the rest of society generally operates. The key message for the conference was that neurological difference brings benefits and challenges and the degree to which this happens is dependent on how those who might be classed as neuro typical, decide to understand and respond to this difference.
PACC opened the conference by sharing an insight into the lives of neurodivergent families, looking at the impact on both parent carer and neuro-divergent children and young people. We talked about the isolation often experienced by families and the impact on parent carers mental health, along with sharing feedback from children and young people which highlights how being different and struggling to understand the world around them is hard work and exhausting. Our main message was that at the point that families asks the system for help, they were likely to have been struggling for some time and need to be met with understanding and empathy. You can read the transcript of PACC’s presentation and the accompanying PowerPoint by clicking on the links.
The next speaker was Dr Steve Farmer from the BeeU (Midland Partnership Foundation Trust) Learning Disability Team, who talked about Positive Behaviour Support (PBS) and how using this approach to improve children’s and young people’s quality of life it can reduce ‘behaviours of concern’. This stimulated a discussion about how social care teams can support early intervention and promote PBS to families and the need for each part of the support system to work together. You can read this presentation by clicking here.
In the afternoon we focused on introducing parts of the system that can offer support to neurodivergent families at different points in their journey. This included;
- Shropshire’s new special school ‘The Keystone Academy’, which focuses on meeting the needs of divergent children and young people. https://thekeystoneacademy.org/
- The STOMP / STAMP initiative looking to ensure that children and young people with a learning disability and/or autism receive the right medication, at the right time, for the right reason. https://www.england.nhs.uk/learning-disabilities/improving-health/stomp/
- The Dynamic Support Register, Care Education & Treatment Reviews, Keyworking and the Intensive Support Team, offering support for those with a learning disability and or autism in crisis and at risk of hospital admission.
- https://www.shropshiretelfordandwrekin.nhs.uk/our-work/learning-disability-and-autism-transformation/dynamic- support-register/
- PACC’s Healthy Lives Programme – connecting young people and families to community-based activities to improve their physical and mental health.
We would like to thank all the speakers and those who attended to on the day.< Back to News List