New service to support vulnerable adults

New service to support vulnerable adults

A new service to help vulnerable adults stay physically and mentally active during the Coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak, is now live.

The Stay Connected service is being funded by the county council and is being delivered through Essex-based Sport For Confidence. Sport for Confidence works with vulnerable adults, providing activity-based programmes in leisure centres throughout the county.

Following the Government’s closure of all leisure facilities until further notice due to the COVID-19 outbreak, all venue sessions have been temporarily suspended.
The organisation is now bringing together occupational therapists and sport coaches to deliver telephone sessions for people with learning disabilities, autism, mental health issues, dementia, physical impairment and other complex health needs. Users will receive a highly personalised home workout video.

Jess Stewart, head of commissioning for adults with learning disabilities and autism at Essex County Council, said, “We are in extraordinary times and our primary focus is on our most vulnerable communities, ensuring they stay safe and healthy.

“This has become more challenging in the current climate so we felt a new service was required to help keep people in Essex with additional needs stay happy and healthy in their own homes.

“The Stay Connected service is an excellent specialist programme for the many people who are in isolation due to COVID-19 and need support now."

The Sport For Confidence team comprises eight occupational therapists, five sports coaches, a trained behaviour advisor and a skills expert. The new contract will support all the existing users of the service plus individuals self-isolating in Supported Living accommodation.

Referrals are being made by learning disability and autism social work teams and Supported Living providers. Updates to the service and other services for people with a learning disability or autism during the COVID-19 outbreak will be shared on the Meaningful Lives Facebook page.

Last updated 8 April 2020