How our employees champion our ethos
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…
The Community operates within a management structure with clear lines of communication and accountability. The various departments within this structure arrange for the provision of care and support systems, allocation of and management of staff teams and arrangements for staff recruitment, training and supervision in accordance with relevant government guidance and management practice.
The extended shift system operates a rota where staff live in alongside residents, sharing in all domestic and recreational activities for two to three days at a time. We find this system provides the unique dynamic between staff and residents where usual categorisation between groups is diminished and the therapeutic advantage of relating to individuals as equals is created.
The Community does not employ psychiatric nurses but employs people from a broad range of backgrounds, who have the qualities and characteristics that provide the environment to implement the Community’s philosophy. Their skills and knowledge are developed through a programme of induction and ongoing training, to and above the requirements of the nationally recognised Care Qualifications. Employees come from both graduate and non-graduate backgrounds and often move on to careers in nursing and social work as well as post-graduate study.
The Community works with a specialised client group in an innovative and creative way. Staff receive a thorough training in the practices of the Community and a knowledge of disabilities and specific conditions, which enables them to meet individual needs and deal with the broad range of associated behaviour, including understanding physical and verbal aggression and self-harm. Appreciation of and an ability to balance the particular and changing needs of individual’s care is guided through the process of care planning, with ongoing monitoring and assessment.
The Community has a strong, settled and cohesive residential staff team of around 80 people. The Community has a high staff to resident ratio, to meet individual needs and ensure that support is uninterrupted and consistent.
Where appropriate, specialist services are secured from relevant professionals to support the assessed needs where required.
The Community operates a thorough recruitment procedure based on equal opportunities whilst ensuring the protection of residents. New staff are confirmed in post only after the Community have received references and on completion of satisfactory Disclosure Barring Service checks (DBS). All staff receive training on issues of Safeguarding.
Residents are involved in staff selection and their feedback on the care provision is encouraged and supported.