The positive benefits of a day at the seaside are the subject of this winning image from Community Care’s second Inspiring Images of Social Care competition.
The star of the photo is a young man from Autism Care UK’s residential service in Lincolnshire, pictured with his support worker during a trip to Morecambe, Lancashire.
Pete Cross, head of strategy and communications at Autism Care UK, said: “We were delighted to win the competition and I know the people in the photo were really pleased about it.
“The image captures a small moment of happiness in someone’s day and the dignity, achievement and inclusion that is really important to a person’s quality of life.”
Autism Care UK is a national provider of support services for adults on the autistic spectrum, including residential care, supported living and outreach and community support.
All service users have a person-centred plan and staff work hard to plan activities that are meaningful, fun and beneficial to the person, rather than being service led.
“There’s this myth around autism that people really like doing the same thing but if you plan things sensitively around people’s needs then you can encourage them to try new things,” said Pete.
Focusing on an individual’s skills and talents are also important and the organisation has recently supported one user to become a champion water skier and another to write a book on their experiences of cycling.
“Recent events like Winterbourne View have seen the sector have a bad time in terms of media and reputation whereas actually there are a lot of very dedicated workers out there,” Pete added.
“We entered the competition because we think it is massively important for social work and social care that the wider public know that it’s not all bad and there is good practice happening.”
The winning image will join 11 others on a charity calendar, which is sponsored by Caritas recruitment and will be sent out to thousands of social care professionals.