What services are currently provided?
A range of services is provided to support people with a physical disability and their carers in Stockton-on-Tees. These include:
- assessment of needs and person-centred action planning;
- adaptations to the home and equipment to make managing everyday tasks easier;
- benefit entitlement advice;
- advice on independent living in the community;
- advice on local support groups, education and employment;
- direct payments which give people the option to arrange their own services specific to their personal situation;
- support and rehabilitation, provided though the Intermediate Care Service, to help people regain their functioning resulting from illness, disability or injury;
- self-directed support through personal choice by either accessing services that the council provides, through approved services provided by an independent organisation or through the offer of a direct payment.
Stockton Independent Living Centre (SILC)
An equipment demonstration centre based in Hardwick, where people can try disability equipment so that they can decide which things are right for them before buying. It provides a stroke clinic to support victims of strokes and their carers.
Home Care Service
This helps people to maintain their independence in familiar surroundings at home.
Stockton Borough Council provides opportunities for people who are older and / or have a physical disability to live in ‘Extra Care’ accommodation. There are currently three schemes in Stockton-on-Tees, providing over 100 housing units.
The STEPs service was established in 2001 by Stockton Borough Council; it provides direct employment support to residents of Stockton and has a broad engagement with employers across the Teesside area.
The service provides support to access vocational training and employment opportunities for disabled people with a diverse range of needs, including physical disabilities, mental health, learning disabilities and sensory disabilities.
STEPs seek to build on individuals’ aims and interests to support them in developing skills and to achieve realistic employment goals. A ‘stepping stone’ approach is used with all clients to ensure progression is at their pace. The service supports individuals with initial one to one support, practical advice and guidance and in identifying and accessing opportunities, overcoming barriers to employment and in building self-confidence.
Additionally the STEPs Employment Service provides support, advice and guidance to employers, including disability awareness guidance, support around retention, advice on aids and adaptations and ongoing support for as long as is needed.
Teesside Ability Support Centre (TASC)
TASC provides social care and life skills learning opportunities for disabled adults in a day centre setting. Activities are carried out both in-house and externally at local colleges of further education, with a variety of courses being offered. A wide range of sports and leisure activities is available. Service users are trained in basic skills thereby creating work placement and work experience for the members. The emphasis of the training is to increase self-confidence and to maximise potential to live as independent a life as possible.
Tees Valley Counselling Trust
This is a free, specialised counselling service to meet the needs of people who have a physical disability, chronic illness, or are the carers of such a person. Counselling is provided to adults aged over 16 and play therapy is used, where appropriate, for children aged 5 to 16.
These provide a range of sensors to detect potentially dangerous situations.
Home Improvement Agency
This is a low-cost essential adaptations scheme which provides for minor works at home. These facilitate hospital discharge or reduce the risks of accidents occurring in or around the home.
This service allows hire of electric scooters, electric and conventional wheelchairs and walking aids. For those who cannot manage alone or prefer not to go out alone, trained escorts are available. Long-term hire of the equipment (for example, for holidays) is available.
Information and guidance on welfare benefits, social care, and consumer issues, as well as a wide range of information covering disability related topics, such as choosing equipment and services is provided.
A large range of disability equipment is supplied, including servicing, repairs and maintenance.
Training and guidance on the safe use of mobility scooters and on the legislation for particular classes of vehicle can be provided. Funding has been reviewed for this service with the EIT recommendation being that the service should move to a sustainable self funding model. The aim is that this will be in place by April 2018.
The provision of personal budgets allows individuals to purchase services to meet their needs in innovative ways.