Date Published: 

Fri, 30/12/2016

Bath & North East Somerset Council has been successful in bidding for £456,800 of Government funding to improve independence for people with learning disabilities.

In September the Department of Health announced that funding would be made available to help people with learning disabilities to live independently by creating a range of housing and technology options.

Nationally only 15% of adults with learning disabilities have a secure long-term tenancy or their own home. The fund will enable more people to live as independently as possible with the best care and support, greatly improving their quality of life.

Councillor Liz Richardson (Conservative, Chew Valley North), Bath & North East Somerset Council Cabinet Member for Homes & Planning, said: “We’re really pleased to secure this funding to develop the use of assistive technology for people with learning disabilities to promote independence and increase the number of people living in their own homes in the community.”

Assistive technology is a general description for a range of applications of (predominantly) electronic equipment used to monitor or enable people. It can help manage or eliminate a wide range of risks to both the individual e.g. of falling, or to the property e.g. fire, smoke, flood alert and can help deliver greater privacy or dignity in the delivery of care and support. 

Working with West of England Care and Repair, the individual, their family and existing support providers, the Council will assess for, identify, procure and install bespoke packages of assistive technology to enable people to live independently and be active participants in their local community. This will include access to training, work related activities, paid employment and leisure/ social opportunities; reducing reliance on high packages of revenue funded support and decreasing the likelihood of hospital admissions and moves into residential care.

Councillor Vic Pritchard (Conservative, Chew Valley South), Bath & North East Somerset Council Cabinet Member for Adult Social Care & Health, said: “This offers a lifeline for people to continue to live full and active lives in their own community. The funding will also support a number of people with learning disabilities to own their own homes using a unique Government approved shared ownership model known as HOLD (home ownership for people with long term disabilities).”

The plans will be delivered in partnership with a range of bid partners including West of England Care and Repair, Advance Housing and CURO.  

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