Disability Life Story: Karen

31 October 2016
Karen has been able to continue to make the most of social opportunities despite her diagnosis of dementia, Downs Syndrome and learning disabilities thanks to the help of Sanctuary Supported Living (SSL).

The exterior of Skelton Court

Now a resident of SSL’s Skelton Court in Leicester, which was commissioned this year, Karen initially moved into SSL’s nearby Sycamore Court in 2011 after her father became unwell and was unable to continue caring for her.

Having now lived at Skelton Court since it opened in 2016, Karen has a personalised support package that suits her individual needs. This allows her to make use of the service’s 24-hour support and receive assistance with all aspects of daily living skills such as washing, dressing and help with her medication. The assistance also enables Karen to attend appointments in the community and continue partaking in activities she enjoys.

Karen has always been a social person who enjoyed family visits and was a regular visitor to local day centres, but her deteriorating condition made this more difficult in later years. As she was keen for these activities to continue, Karen was able to call on the support from staff to help her continue to attend. This was managed by assisting with changes to her diet and accommodating her mobility needs.

These adaptations and support provisions in her personalised support plan have helped Karen overcome setbacks that, without help, would have closed her off from the things she enjoys.

Karen’s deteriorating dementia means she has lost a lot of her daily living skills, in addition to her ability to articulate as well as she used to. Despite these setbacks, Karen is still able to take part in her favourite pastimes, including musical activities and festive celebrations in the run-up to Christmas, as well as trips to the cinema and meals out, thanks to the on-hand support from the service’s support workers.

SSL local service manager Hayley Bourne said: “Karen is lucky to have a father who cared for her so well and it is sad he is no longer in a position to do so. However, by receiving personalised support in a setting like Skelton Court, there are many more opportunities open to her now, as she receives support tailored to her needs.

She has been able to make friends with the other residents. It was great to see them all come together for her 60th birthday party last year by signing cards, decorating the lounge and making sure Karen had a great time over tea and music.

Hayley Bourne, SSL Local Service Manager

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Sanctuary Supported Living is a trading name of Sanctuary Housing Association and Sanctuary Home Care Limited, both exempt charities. Images used on our website and literature may be representative and are for illustration purposes only.

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