Supporting Louise to improve her confidence and wellbeing!
When Louise* moved to Wey House, our specialist nursing home, in 2018, she was withdrawn and lacked trust in the staff supporting her. Louise is non-verbal and this often meant she was resistant to building relationships and interacting with staff members.
A new journey
The staff at Wey house spent the first few weeks learning about Louise’s interests and what makes her happy in order to build her trust, which was vital to ensuring care could be delivered safely and effectively.
Because Louise is non-verbal, she communicates through facial expressions and body language. Staff quickly learnt that eye contact was key when communicating with Louise and began using this as part of her person-centred care plan.
This helped Wey House staff make real rewarding connections with Louise based on trust and understanding. This resulted in Louise’s first verbal communication with staff members! Staff explained that they were there to support Louise, emphasising that her wishes and choices were important and would always be considered in the way we deliver her care and support.
Coming out of her shell
From this huge step in communication, we learnt that Louise wanted to be supported by staff close to her age, including her keyworker. We put these measures in place so more suitable staff members could help Louise to feel comfortable when accessing the local community. They often take her out shopping for some 1-1 time, so she can treat herself to some new leopard print clothing! Staff can now pre-empt Louise’s mood by paying close attention to her facial expressions and body language. Louise knows we are led by her and trusts us to support her needs.
As a result, Louise became more responsive to our care and support, and started to enjoy the things that make her the happiest. For example, Louise told staff that she loves having a lie-in and enjoys watching television whilst having her breakfast. Because of this staff know not to wake her too early and always ensure she is able to watch her favourite shows, Hollyoaks and Eastenders over a bowl of cereal.
But it doesn’t stop there! Because of the support and help from the staff team, Louise has grown in confidence and has even started accessing a local community group ‘ladies night’, where she enjoys interacting with people her age and talking about common interests.
Onwards and upwards
After making huge progress with Louise and her social skills, staff worked closely with her family and an activity co-ordinator to help her to make contact and rebuild a relationship with her child after it broke down while she was struggling with her health and communication. After planning and slow introductions by the staff team, Louise now goes home on a regular basis to see her child, enjoying cuddles on the sofa for hours – this is when she is at her happiest.
Since Joining Wey House, Louise has gained new confidence and positivity which has allowed her to grow her independence and achieve her personal goals too! Staff will continue to trial different communication techniques to ensure Louise is always supported in the way she prefers so she can lead a happy and fulfilling life.
Help us make a difference
Join our team at Voyage Care to help make a difference to people like Louise. We are looking for kind, caring and compassionate people to join us at Voyage Care. To find your perfect role visit our careers website here.
*Names have been changed for confidentiality