New facility to bring benefits for adults with learning disabilities in Arfon

Date 27/01/2017

Gwynedd Council is pleased to announce that it has secured funding to develop a new service delivery model that will benefit adults with learning disabilities based at the Arfon Leisure Centre.

The Welsh Government Intermediate Care Fund grant will be used to refurbish the café area. Work will also include upgrading the community room on the first floor to create accessible facilities for users of the Learning Disability Service which will include a wet room with a track hoist and height adjustable changing bench.

Reopening in May 2017, the café will provide work experience and training opportunities for adults with learning disabilities to develop important practical life skills, as well as providing the wider community with a new service. A range of community activities will be facilitated by the café, based on local community needs. Initial ideas include parent and toddler groups, ‘Cuppa and chat’ sessions, health and wellbeing activities along with agency ‘pop-up’ advice surgeries.

Gwynedd Council’s Learning Disability Service will focus on establishing what’s important to each individual through continuous engagement and advocacy with service users and their families.

Ceryl Teleri Davies, Gwynedd Council’s Adult Learning Disability Senior Manager said: “Our vision as a Learning Disability Service for the future is to focus on progression and enablement to encourage individual independence.

“This means that the support is designed to help individuals focus on their strengths and assist them in obtaining independent living skills. We will actively support individuals and place their progression needs at the centre of all interventions so that we empower them to live fulfilled lives.

“Over the coming months, we will be working closely with service users, their families and staff to develop the options to ensure that they meet people’s personal aspirations for the future, prioritising the conversations to begin with those who currently attend the Manton day service.”

Councillor Gareth Roberts, Gwynedd Council Cabinet Member for Adults and Health matters noted: “As a Council, we want to enable adults with learning disabilities to develop their self-confidence and skills so that they can get out into the world and lead full lives. The work experience and training opportunities provided will give people a chance to develop skills that will be invaluable for work as well as their personal life.

“We firmly believe that this new community model will be one option that will help us to meet the needs and expectations of service users and help to integrate the lives of the individuals as a key part of society’s daily life. It will provide the opportunity for people with learning disabilities to work, as well as helping to boost self-confidence and push the boundaries of what the individuals realise they can achieve. We want to deliver a personalised, individual care and support package for people with learning disabilities which include opportunities to learn and develop within their communities.”

Councillor Mair Rowlands, Gwynedd Council Cabinet Member for Healthy Gwynedd added: “Gwynedd Council is eager to ensure that we can make the best use out of our facilities. This exciting new model of service delivery will provide a bright, new option for adults with learning disabilities in the Arfon area and, in doing so, will also help to secure the long-term sustainability of the leisure centre.

“This project shows what can be achieved by developing innovative ideas which allow different Council departments to work together to deliver services. This joined-up approach has seen the Council’s Leisure and Learning Disability services working together to ensure the best use of resources. This collaborative effort will now see the reopening of the cafe at the Arfon Leisure Centre as well as offering fantastic opportunities for people to secure training and qualifications in the preparation of food as well as the associated benefits of interacting and socialising with friends, co-workers and members of the wider public. I look forward to this new model being operational from May 2017.”