Emily Hogarth, year 3 student learning disability nurse, has provided the following account:
On Friday 9th February 2018, the Wellbeing Service and the Carers’ Information & Support Service joined forces to host an amazing event aimed at people who have learning disabilities and/or autism, carers, friends, family and staff. The event, titled ‘Differently Abled’, facilitated partnership working from a vast range of services and provision within Hull and East Yorkshire. The event involved Humber NHS Foundation Trust, East Riding Carers Service, Hull and East Riding Councils and Hull and East Riding CCGs.
On the day, Differently Abled saw over 800 members of the public pass through the doors. Over 85 services were present at the event, from birth to end of life, including housing support, day and night time opportunities and a dedicated Health Zone. Staff and services had chance to network at the event, allowing the opportunity to build knowledge base and create further pathways for their service and people with a learning disability and/or autism.
The event was divided into ‘zones’ to make it simple and accessible to all. The zones included:
· Adult Zone
· Children’s Zone
· Day and night time opportunities Zone
· Housing information and support Zone
· Communication Zone
· Health Zone
· Autism Simulation Zone
Overall, the day was a roaring success and the feedback was greatly positive! Some of the feedback includes:
“The largest gathering of services I’ve ever seen. Very informative, excellent networking opportunities!”
“The atmosphere was buzzing. Lots of information and friendly people were there to talk to!”
Student Learning Disability Nurses from the University of Hull were greatly involved within the day, this included setting up the venue in the morning, assisting with stallholders, handing out lunches, assisting service users throughout the day and performing physical health checks under the supervision of nurses. All students who participated received a certificate for their assistance.
The day went off without a hitch and plans are already in motion for the next event!
A special thank you to all who made this event possible, including Julie Bahn, Suzanne Nicholls, Sam Benstead, Michaela Marr, Judy Lewis, Anna Daniels and Tracy Gamble.