Feeling empowered to use her voice

 In News

Feeling empowered to use her voice

X was referred into the Women’s Lives Leeds Service by one of our partner organisations and was allocated to a Complex Needs Worker. 

Reasons referral was made:

  • Housing – concerns about suitability of home due to disabilities
  • Concerns around financial and emotional abuse from family members
  • Physical health concerns
  • Social Isolation

The client was referred in after concerns were raised by the referrer about living conditions and treatment from family members but the referrer was unable to explore this further due to the constraints of her role. The client was living in accommodation that presented as unsuitable for her physical health needs and she reported being socially isolated. The client was also neglecting her physical health needs. At the time when the referral was made there were also concerns about the client’s memory and a query over possible dementia. The client was only receiving therapy at the time of the referral and had no practical support in the community in place. The case initially was thought to be a short piece of work to intervene and refer to Adult Social Care but more issues arose once support commenced. Where other services may not afford a client flexibility in how long they can work with the, WLL adapted to the needs of the client. There was a delay in support starting due to high caseload numbers at the point of referral but the client was aware.

Breakdown of support offered:

  • Referral was made on 29/08/2018 and the first support visit was 05/10/2018
  • 36 face to face visits averaging approx. 3 support visits per month
  • 21 of the face to face visits were focussed around physical health in some aspect
  • 24 of the face to face visits were focussed around offering emotional support

Referrals made:

  • Adult Social Care which led to a Disabilities Services Team referral
  • Leeds Mind Peer Support
  • Leeds Mind befriending service
  • Inkwell (rejected due to age limitation)
  • NHS run diabetic course
  • One You Leeds – weight management course
  • Women’s Counselling and Therapy group

 Work completed throughout support:

  • Referral made to Adult Social Care due to concerns that the client’s living situation did not meet her needs and that her adult son who was down as her carer was not fulfilling his duties. I supported the client at the assessments with a Social Worker and advocated for her needs where appropriate. The outcome has been that Adult Social Care assessed the property and the client was referred to the Disabilities Services Team for adaptations to be made to her home. The case with Adult Social Care is now closed. The Disabilities Service Team have made arrangements to go and survey the property to see what works they can carry out.
  • The client had only a few teeth when I met her and a fear of the dentist due to a previous negative experience whereby she was hospitalised and had a serious risk to life. I supported the client to find a female dentist and attended appointments with her. The positive outcome is that she now has a full set of dentures and reports that her confidence has increased. The client now feels able to attend the dentist alone.
  • Presented the client with options about moving from her property which was complicated due to her having a shared ownership with a Housing Association. After some thought the client decided to stay and renovate the property and to have the Disabilities Service Team carry out works that would support her living in the family home. Work has commenced with the support from her family to improve the house.
  • Supported the client to be able to communicate better with her family as she felt that she could not assert her opinion in situations. The client reports that she now feels more confident to put her point across with her family and feels they listen to her moew.
  • Contacted and liaised with Age Concern to check that the client was on the correct benefits and was claiming what she could.
  • Supported the client to attend the GP and discuss concerns about her memory. Followed this up by supporting the client to the Memory Clinic in Leeds to be assessed. The positive outcome was that the client does not have dementia. This offered the client a great peace of mind.
  • Encouraged the client to access a course to better manage her diabetes and her diet so that she can feel healthier. Supported the client to the GP and requested a new blood sugar monitor as she had lost hers and was not checking her bloods daily as she needed to with Type 2 diabetes.
  • Supported the client to be referred to Leeds Mind classes and attended the initial session with her to help her feel comfortable. The client now feels able to attend Peer Support classes and workshops alone.
  • I referred the client the Leeds Mind befriending Service as she reported that she felt isolated and would like social time away from home. She remains on the waiting list to be allocated a befriender.

The client gave ending feedback that through support she feels much calmer and able to deal with situations that she is faced with. The client feels more able to assert her views and wishes and not to go along with situations that she feels uncomfortable with. The client has been encouraged to start work on her property to improve her living conditions. The client has a greater knowledge of where she can go for support and that she does not have to feel as socially isolated as she had previously. Her physical health has improved and her Type 2 diabetes is under control. The client was reluctant to meet both a new GP and a new dentist but through support has developed a positive relationship with both.

Overall the client has noticed an improvement in her quality of life since engaging with support.

Outcomes Monitoring Tool showing progress made

Outcomes Monitoring Tool showing progress made

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Self portrait completed by young woman Outcomes Monitoring in the self-esteem session