Tel: 020 7723 1216   Email: info@onewestminster.org.uk

Supporting adults with learning disabilities

One Westminster has been working with adults with learning disabilities since 1996, through a popular council funded volunteering project, Supported Volunteering for People with Learning Disabilities. This enables local organisations and businesses to give people with learning disabilities the chance to volunteer while we support and guide them.

We then realised the need for a back-up scheme which gives extra help to members in overcoming social isolation and gaining confidence and life skills. This resulted in a successful pilot project (2012-2015), which led to our launching a new and exciting three-year project – Befriending & Mentoring Adults with Learning Difficulties - also fully funded by the Big Lottery Fund.

SUPPORTED VOLUNTEERING FOR PEOPLE WITH LEARNING DISABILITIES

SUPPORTED VOLUNTEERING FOR PEOPLE WITH LEARNING DISABILITIES

One Westminster is looking for people and community organisations to help people with learning disabilities gain experience in part-time roles to build their confidence and learn new skills. Of particular interest are roles that involve reception and office administration tasks, gardening, and painting and decorating. And sometimes we need people to help run market stalls.

Helping a person with a learning disability in this way can make a tremendous difference to his or her life, taking them out of what is often an isolated existence and giving them the chance to develop social and work skills.

For more information

For more information

If you would like to find out more about supported volunteering, then please email Najla El-Busefi or call her on 07436 039014.

BEFRIENDING AND MENTORING ADULTS WITH LEARNING DIFFICULTIES

BEFRIENDING AND MENTORING ADULTS WITH LEARNING DIFFICULTIES

Befriending and Mentoring Adults with Learning Disabilities is a three-year One Westminster project funded by the Big Lottery Fund. It aims to reduce social isolation and provide opportunities for people with learning disabilities to learn new skills and participate actively in the community, thereby becoming more independent.  

By doing this it seeks to raise members’ confidence, as well as improve their health and general well-being. Every participant is given the opportunity to develop life, social and employability skills through programmes that are individually tailored to their needs, interests and goals.

Volunteers play a central role in the project as befrienders/mentors. Each of our project members is carefully matched to a volunteer, who provides one-to-one support for two hours a week. In addition, the scheme is supplemented by group learning and social activities. 

One Westminster monitors each matched relationship closely, seeking at all times to make this experience worthwhile for both project member and volunteer.  

This project has already demonstrated the incredible value of involving volunteers. Giving people with learning disabilities the opportunity to engage with others from diverse backgrounds is invaluable in providing different and stimulating experiences.

BEFRIENDER/MENTOR VOLUNTEERS

BEFRIENDER/MENTOR VOLUNTEERS

Volunteers don’t need to have any previous experience, but do need to have patience and empathy, as well as be prepared to commit to two hours a week, for at least six months.  

All volunteers are DBS checked and trained before being matched with a person with a learning disability, and receive continuous supervision and support. Ensuring best practice is ensured by One Westminster policies and procedures, which cover such areas as confidentiality and safeguarding. 

Each project member is responsible for their personal expenses when they are out and about with a volunteer. One Westminster will reimburse volunteers for their travel and refreshments expenses.

WHO CAN BENEFIT FROM THIS SCHEME

WHO CAN BENEFIT FROM THIS SCHEME

Adults (18+) with a mild to moderate learning disability, who live in Westminster, and want support to overcome isolation and improve skills and abilities are welcome to become project members.

TO REFER SOMEONE

TO REFER SOMEONE

If you want to refer someone with a learning disability, or would like more information, please email Sandra Joao or call her on 020 7535 0484.