What the Community means to service users, relatives, external professionals and staff.
It’s brilliant, I wish there were more homes like this in the country. I cannot praise them enough
I can say without a doubt that this organisation has the highest standards. To needs, crises, risk, aspirations, preferences and opportunities of relationship based care and treatment it has been second to none since I have been in psychiatry…The Community lead the way, the work is very well led and focused from a multidisciplinary perspective. They get my vote and always have.
Well, what is it that makes The Community so unique? It enables people once again to grow into being people rather than patients. It helps them rediscover old skills and learn new skills. Its philosophy, that everyone is of value and has skills, creates an atmosphere of optimism and for many residents, for the first time in a very long time, suddenly all sorts of things are possible.
As my brothers next of kin I am pleased to report continued progress in his stability and social interaction over the past year. He stayed with us again at Christmas for ten days and was at ease with his surroundings even though we had moved house since the previous trip and have a rumbustious four year old to contend with. I can say with certainty that had his condition not been treated so successfully over the last ten or so years at the Community of St Antony and St Elias, we would simply have been unable to offer him the chance to stay with us for any length of time because of the danger he posed to himself, and to a lesser extent to those around him, and can only offer our wholehearted thanks to all those involved in his care, who have achieved so much.
A culture of respect exists between staff and residents. This creates a caring environment for everybody – both staff and residents.
We were told that people who lived in the home benefited from “outstanding” care because of the competence and dedication of the management.
Staff spoke highly of the people who lived in Priors Piece and praised their talents and personalities. Staff made comments such as “He is a lovely chap, hugely intelligent”, “He’s a poet, like no one you’ve ever met”, “He is excellent company” and “He is a very friendly and most likeable chap”.
We get to spend a lot of time with people, staff notice if someone is feeling down and spend more time with them. It’s a caring home.
In hospital, I was more sedated. I was asleep normally. It’s just a feeling where you haven’t got anywhere to go except there, just being there, depressed, so agitated, so angry, so furious why it happened to you, so down in the dumps that you can’t get out, can’t see any way forward. They should have more places like this, where it’s one-to-one, talking to you, gradually building you up into a state where you can be confident enough to carry on.
I’m as happy as can be.
Throughout the inspection, we saw staff offering choice during. meal times and people were able to help themselves freely. Staff told us “we always asked people what they want; you often end up cooking two or three choices”.
One relative described how the registered manager had travelled some distance to see their relative on two separate occasions in order to spend time with them. Their relative was non communicative but according to them the registered manager “Didn’t give up, they tried again and again. They got (my relative) to talk because they didn’t give up”.
The quality of the manager and the staff is professional but also caring. They genuinely seem to value their work and value the people they look after.
Senior managers regularly ask for our opinions and feedback. This leads to a culture of openness where people feel like they are contributing to the development of the service.
They must vet the staff really well, the calibre of staff is exceptional.
Stunning effort, engagement and care throughout all this time. I would trust them with my own children if the need ever arose.
He likes one to one attention but he doesn’t like large groups, he always puts his name down for lots of activities but he doesn’t always take part.
There is always plenty for people to eat, they have good quality fresh food.
I have found the involvement of the Community, with four of my patients, beneficial at every level…..It has to be said that the combination of the actions of the team I work with and the creative and engaging experiences he has in Devon have achieved what psychiatrists could not have up until he went there. He is truly building a life there. Social inclusion is a long path for some but the Community makes the path easier. I am truly impressed with the staff and their dedication and realism about long term change and development at an individual level…
There is a homely feel rather than an institutionalised one; it’s relaxed and everyone tries to get along. We have the well-being of people at the centre of our hearts.
Staff ensured a great deal of planning and preparation was involved in their care. Staff had liaised and coordinated with people, their relatives, healthcare and social care professionals as well as relevant authorities in order to provide a support package and an environment which reflected people’s individual needs and preferences.
I am not saying this in a biased way, I have complete confidence in them, I have always been impressed by the care. There is nothing negative I could say.
They managed his crisis like no other home could have. They never treated him like an unwanted parcel.
One of the people living at the home was an accomplished artist and they had created a work space for this person in the garden, this was important as it enabled them to leave their canvasses and paint out instead of having to pack them away each day.
I can say unreservedly that I have never before worked in such a positive, therapeutic organisation, and I regard it a privilege to be able to use my skills in such an effective environment.
They are always looking for ways to improve, they always seek feedback, listen and never dismiss.
Staff are very knowledgeable and skilled…there’s always plenty of staff when we visit.
People’s relatives also stated they felt people were safe. One relative said “Her safety always comes into everything” and “A great deal of consideration is taken for her safety”.
They were open in their dialogue and they stepped up to find out what they could do. They are not like other providers. I find them really brilliant.
I came here to enjoy myself and to get back the time I lost when I was in hospital.
I love it. It’s like my other family
They have enabled him to achieve a quality of life he could never achieve in another setting. I am hugely impressed with them, they are an outstanding provider of care, I couldn’t have been more impressed.
Residents were involved in all aspects of their care, including planning and reviews, and took pride in being able to direct their care.
We are so impressed with the care they are giving our extremely ill son and it is the best care he has ever received.
I feel people are safe, they protect people and I find it excellent.
Staff treated people with kindness, compassion, dignity and respect. Steps were taken to improve people’s relationships with their relatives and staff had organised regular day trips for one person to visit their relatives as they could no longer stay overnight.
Over the last few years, I have been regularly visiting clients from our service who have become members of the Community. It’s been a priviledge to witness the return of hope, meaning and self-respect to the lives of our clients living there and to be working in partnership with an organization that really understands the value & meaning of community & Recovery.
They have an exceptional way of making it feel like a home rather than just a house.
I am happy here and I do say how I feel, staff on the whole are very patient and kind to us all and they have a sense of humour which helps.
People and staff spoke highly of the registered manager. Comments included “I get on very well with (manager’s name)”, “He’s excellent”, “(manager’s name) is very approachable. He cares that’s why”.
He lives life exactly how he likes to live it
There are no things that I am unhappy with.
We encourage everybody to support each other. Observing others overcoming their own challenges offers opportunity for discussion, reflection and growth, and this can diminish isolation and lonliness.
Once a week I go to the Community allotment where we grow food for the five houses.
They are responsive to people needs and have a can do attitude, nothing appears to be too much trouble for them. They are a brilliant service which achieves the most amazing outcomes for people, they should be proud of the service they provide.
Privacy and choice prevail. The atmosphere of respect which prevails for both the staff and the residents results in a very responsive atmosphere.
It’s really nice here. We’re one big team, residents included…I like being around these people. All the residents have such good qualities.
My relative has been in several care homes since being diagnosed….This is the only place that has had either the resources or the will to materially improve his condition and quality of life. I only wish there were more homes like this.
There’s lots of variety in activities and they cater for all abilities…There is a two week rolling rota which changes monthly all you have to do is fill in a form its great.
The service had a strong person centred culture which helped people to express their views and share their points of view.
Residents can choose what they want to do and where they want to go…we encourage and support people to take control over their own lives.
They have created a culture of respect between staff and people who use the service.
I can say unreservedly that I have never before worked in such a positive, therapeutic organisation, and I regard it a privilege to be able to use my skills in such an effective environment.
Staff are always available to facilitate home visits; it’s never been a problem.
I have absolutely 100% confidence in the place and the manager, I have complete confidence my son is in a safe place.
There’s always someone here and available when I need them.
I had a week long training induction, very thorough, and since then updates on physical intervention, breakaway, Asperger’s…the induction gives additional skills and is tailored to the people who live here.
The staff are very good and they treat me with respect and dignity and the staff are always there for me.
The manager is great, I think he’s genuinely just a nice guy.
Hamelin had a very homely atmosphere which fitted the personalities of the people who lived there. The home was very artistic and musical and people’s own beautiful paintings hung on the walls. People played music throughout the day and the atmosphere was a happy and social one. Throughout our inspection we heard laughter, chatting and gentle friendly banter.
Staff had a good knowledge and understanding of each individual. They knew how to reduce environmental stress and anticipate situations which might trigger people to become anxious and / or agitated.
My son is doing things which he hasn’t done in years such as playing football and getting back into his photography.
I like my room. I’ve got a lovely bed, it’s blue, I love blue.
They are very aware of the facets of her illness and her safety is top priority.
They try very hard to respect her privacy, whilst still recognising how much help she needs.
The training is really good here, that’s one of the best things about this company they ensure that we develop the right skills. Its great!
The people who work here are funny…They’re nice to me, they’re never rude.
People were supported to be as independent as possible, taking responsibility for their medicines, finances and learning new skills. The staff ensured people were physically safe and that their mental wellbeing was prioritised.
The community’s visions and values were embedded in every aspect of the home. People were treated as equals and were encouraged to take control of their lives as far as possible. Staff competence and behaviours were continuously monitored by management to ensure they
were displaying the values of the community and the high level of competence expected.
Staff went the extra mile to ensure personalised care. One doctor we spoke to confirmed care was personalised, “..a lot of common sense and human respect.”
It’s starting to feel like home, It does feel like home, I’m going to paint my room!
Nothing is too much trouble all people have to do is ask and the staff provide it, they really do look after them.
My patient has had a first class service that is safe and effective in a way that defies belief
The staff have always been kind to her..The staff are very nice and I think they genuinely care for her. She has a really good relationship with them, a really friendly relationship.
One relative told us that the staff treated everyone as equals and this was apparent when they visited and sometimes they were unable to tell who was a resident and who was a member of staff. They told us this was because people were “together” and “treated each other with so much respect”.
I first heard of the Community when I was training in Devon over twenty years ago. It has gone form strength to strength since then. I have tried to create such perspectives as I have seen in the Community where and when I can in the NHS environments in which I work, but, unfortunately, that has not been possible other than at an aspirational level. Good luck and keep up the good work.
They are well trained in the technical stuff – they are human beings and I like them to be natural. They are great at cheering me up and we have a lot of banter between us all. They accept me for who I am.
The staff help me a lot, they give me advice, it’s the best thing that has ever happened to me.
The company provides lots of training and there is always the opportunity to do more all you have to do is ask
Staff told us how they had supported the transitional arrangements for a person who had recently moved into their own flat. Staff told us that although they were sad to see the person move on it was the right decision for them. One staff member said, “That’s the best bit about my job seeing people progress”.
They recognise about capacity, they include clients in decision making. They include people in everything.
All of them walk the extra mile for the residents, the human input is there..They truly care about him. I’m being looked after as well, they support me and my wellbeing.
I love working here, I really enjoy it we’re all equal and we each have our own skills.
We have enough staff. We have time to sit down with the guys. We keep them company.
Dignity, privacy and choice are at the heart of our ethos and this is reflected in how we work with individuals.
They saved my son, the change in him is huge. They trust him, teach him to live and enjoy life. It’s the best thing that ever happened to him. They should get a gold star.
During our inspection we observed some nice interactions between people and staff. There was much laughter, chatting and friendly banter exchanged. Staff clearly knew people well and people responded to staff in comfortable and friendly ways. For example, one person approached a member of staff when they were talking to us, put their arm around the staff member and said “This is my little friend here”.
It’s a happy feeling when you’ve got mates…you motivate each other. You help each other strive forward.
I love it it’s all about empowerment, encouragement and independence at their pace, we are a community a family.
People and staff told us that they routinely went to pubs, restaurants, cinema and shops. Staff demonstrated they were knowledgeable about people’s needs and the things that were important to them in their lives.
I had meetings with them before I moved here. It made me feel much more comfortable that they knew how I communicate.
I can do what I want. I have a virtual music studio in my room and one of the staff helps me with this as well as another carer from another house. Music is life for me. I also go walking, fishing, canoeing and archery. I am in an archery competition on Friday.
The staff are nice, helpful and always make an effort to approach you, talk to you – all are laid back and calm.
They really know their stuff…You can tell that the company values the importance of training and invests in their staff team.
I never cease to be amazed at the transformation in a period of about six weeks when a new resident joins the house.
The staff here just see the best in people. They’re always praising how nice everyone is…If staff weren’t kind they wouldn’t be here
We teach people home skills, living skills, hygiene, social skills. We build trusting relationships with people at their own pace. We help build confidence.
Risks to people were managed so people were supported to fulfil their dreams and goals. For example one person we met had difficulties with balance due to their health condition. They were at risk of falls. The person had protective clothing and a staff escort in the community.
Staff cared deeply about people’s wellbeing and self-esteem. Each person’s care plan contained information about how staff should boost people’s self-esteem. For example, staff were encouraged to include one person in all conversations, where possible, and acknowledge their achievements with positive feedback. With another person, staff were encouraged to create opportunities for the person to boost their own self-esteem through sport and outdoor activity, which they excelled at.
The manager there got (my relative) on his feet again, he is so good and doesn’t give up.
Our role is to build trust with people in our own care and support – I think that helps them to feel safe.
I had the very happy experience of working closely with the staff at the Community of St Antony and St Elias to look after a patient of mine with a severe and enduring mental illness…I was always very impressed with the positive attitude that the staff adopted which helped us all to see beyond the illness to the person underneath and their potential. They were informed and vigilant in terms of managing risk. They were caring and supportive whilst respecting the patient’s independence and wishes. They were respectful of the role of the various statutory organisations involved and committed to working collaboratively. I was confident that my patient was given the best possible opportunities to recover from their illness as a result.
Everyone seems happy. It seems like a happy atmosphere…I have never worked in such a caring environment. It feels like a home.
They (the staff) always think of us in a good way, nothings too hard for them.
The house manager is lovely and very supportive.
I cannot praise them enough, this place should be cloned.
I like living here. The staff are friendly.
If I was worried about something I’d talk to staff, they’d listen, no problem there. The Staff help to keep me safe, they listen to you…it’s the best place.
There are very few settings that could manage as well as they do. They are an amazing place.
My brother was very active before his illness being a keen scout, walker and cyclist, and has really thrived on the physical activities and social interaction that are such an integral part of the Community’s ethos. Prior to joining the Community, he made little or no progress at all and regressed on a number of occasions. I believe it remains unique in the country in this aspect of treatment for mental illness and his record since moving to Totnes speaks for itself about the benefits for him.
People spoke highly of the staff at Priors Piece and they care they provided to them. People spoke of the kindness and caring nature of the staff with comments such as “The people who work here are funny”, “They’re nice to me, they’re never rude” and “They are nice to me here”.
The Community is safely and effectively keeping these patients well.
They are very supportive, they give (my relative) structure and there’s a safety net which supports them with their independence.
People who lived in 5 Priory Drive were supported towards independent living with care, dedication and understanding. People spoke very highly of the home and described how living there met their individual needs.
They put people at the heart of what they do…they always put people first and they deliver.
The staff are brilliant at enabling and encouraging people”. To make the most of their daily lives people were encouraged to try new experiences whilst managing any risks they might face.
I cannot speak highly enough about Prior’s Piece. They have turned the life around of one of my service users.
Nothing could be better. I have access to Wi-Fi, music and everybody’s really friendly…this really benefits me.
They are not like other providers, I find it excellent, I cannot fault anything that they do.
There is an ethos of “Everyone is of value just as they are and nothing is too good for them”, this results in an atmosphere of total care.
They’re very honest, upfront and treated him with great dignity and respect. They go over and above in relation to dignity and respect. They are very sensitive.