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New plan to support people with disabilities launched

The strategy aims to support disabled people of all ages

Four people at the launch of the Whole Life Disability strategy
Pictured from l-r are Councillor Ivan Ould, Jane Moore, director of children and families, Peter Davis, assistant director for adults and communities and Christine Radford, support member for adults and communities

A new plan to support people with disabilities to live as independently as possible, access support and develop skills has been launched by the county council. 

The Whole Life Disability strategy, which launched this month (17 May), sets out how the authority works alongside disabled people of all ages as well as their families and carers. 

One of the key focal points of the strategy is to empower those who need support to take more control of their own health and wellbeing.

The plan – which was shaped following engagement with more than 1,000 people – also aims to help prevent and reduce the need for long-term care services and support people to lead independent and fulfilling lives.

We spoke to many disabled people, their families and carers when drafting this strategy to ensure they were at the heart of what we’re trying to achieve. 

“The strategy demonstrates that we’ve listened to the feedback and have taken action. People with disabilities deserve to be able to access support and develop skills to meet life’s challenges. We want them to be able to live as independently as possible in their communities and have choice and control over their lives.

The plan also focuses on young people, in particular, those aged between 13 and 25, who have an Education, Health and Care Plan, with the aim of achieving a smooth transition from school to further education, training and work, together with continuation of support to meet health and care needs.

The plan emphasises the early work which agencies, schools and colleges can do to help young people:

  • Become more independent;
  • Be active in the community;
  • Develop new skills; and
  • Discover services appropriate to their needs.

As young people develop they should be more involved in decisions about their own future. 

“It's estimated there are 184 young people who will transition into adult social care services by 2021/22 so it's vital that young people have the tools at their disposal to help them make choices about leaving school or home, getting jobs or moving on to further or higher education.

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