Leicester man gives back with RSPCA volunteer work

19 June 2018

A Leicester man with learning disabilities feels he is “giving something back” after support workers helped him land a volunteer post with the RSPCA.

Darren with SSL local service manager Nikki Oakley

Darren Chisholm, 48, is a resident of Sanctuary Supported Living’s (SSL) Skelton Court, which offers residential care for people with learning disabilities.

Darren had been living independently before he came to the service in February 2018, after his care needs reached the point of needing a residential setting.

Once at Skelton Court, staff worked with Darren to create a tailored support plan, which sets out how and when he receives personal care, help with medication and steps to encourage him to join local groups and use public transport.

Despite his change of setting, Darren has been supported by staff to continue the things he enjoys, including a volunteer slot on hospital radio, where he has been spinning decks six hours a week for the past three years.

Most recently, SSL staff helped him fill in registration forms to volunteer with the local RSPCA dog shelter, where he now helps with a range of activities, including assisting with the shelter’s fun days.

He said: “My volunteering makes me feel like I am giving something back to the community, especially the patients at the hospital and the other volunteers with the RSPCA”.

"Since moving into Skelton Court, the staff have supported me to have the confidence to be more independent and achieve goals to make life more enjoyable. I feel my outlook on living has changed with all the encouragement I have received from the staff."

Since moving into Skelton Court, the staff have supported me to have the confidence to be more independent and achieve goals to make life more enjoyable. I feel my outlook on living has changed with all the encouragement I have received from the staff.

Darren Chisholm, Resident

SSL local service manager Nikki Oakley said: “When Darren first arrived at Skelton Court, he was very quiet and a little shy, but since living here for a few months, he has become very confident in himself and loves to help staff and residents as much as he is able.

“He is usually very happy and nearly always has a smile; life for Darren has become a lot more enjoyable.”

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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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