Expert care provider supports family with respite care
Sixteen-year-old Elliott Worthington from Runcorn has the mental capacity of an 18-month-old baby, is severely autistic, and has a number of other complex conditions that have a huge impact on his daily life and, subsequently, those of his family.
Elliottâ€™s mother, 50-year-old Joanne Knight and her husband Chris Knight, struggled to support Elliott on their own as he sleeps for only four hours per night due to the severity if his autism and other underlying medical conditions.
In addition to a lack of sleep, Elliott suffers from a number of conditions including epilepsy, pica (whereby children persistently crave and consume non-food items) and a brain abnormality, so he needs constant care and supervision.
The family turned to Preston-based care specialists CLC for help in [insert date]. Â Joanne explains: â€œCaring for Elliott is more than a full time job, and we recognised we need specialist help. We have received support from other care providers in the past but they did not have the right experience and were unable to control Elliottâ€™s challenging behaviours and medical needs.
â€œSince meeting CLC and benefitting from their respite care and support, we have noticed a huge difference in Elliottâ€™s health and conditions, whilst our stress levels have also been reduced as a family.
â€œCLC provide us with support from two personal assistants (PAs) on a Saturday morning, to give me a break and some time to get on with some chores or visit friends or family.
â€œElliot attends school from 9:00am until 3:00pm during the week but in half-term and the summer months caring for him is much harder, so we get additional help from CLC as I canâ€™t go out with him alone in case he reacts badly to his environment.
â€œElliott is very tall for his age group, 6â€1 and CLCâ€™s PAs have done a fantastic job to ensure that Elliott is happy and comfortable at all times. He is non-verbal and struggles to formulate thoughts into words but having a sense of familiarity with the PAs has given Elliott more human contact and he had developed an understanding of certain words.
â€œFor instance, Elliott said â€˜pen penâ€™ recently which we figured means presents so when he says this to CLC, he is taken out to buy a small toy. These small steps make a big difference to our lives and we know that Elliott is happy due to his facial expressions.
â€œHaving autism means that Elliott is much younger than his years and he finds pleasure in playing with small objects such as string, bubbles and sand. He enjoys the sound of music and his love for water and nature means that we often play in the paddling pool in our back garden or visit local parks, when they arenâ€™t too crowded.
â€œSince the beginning, CLC has understood our needs and provided support so our lives can move forward in the best possible way. We have formed a great relationship with the team and we now plan activities that we all know he will enjoy.
â€œElliott reacts best to upbeat personalities as he can sense if someone is nervous and therefore his behaviour will change. However, our PAs have a great understanding of his mannerisms and can confidently take Elliott out into the community to ensure that he is not isolated.
â€œI left my job more than 14 years ago to care for Elliott on a permanent basis so having the additional support from CLC has enabled us to regain control of his care, allowed us to get some breathing space as a family, whilst ensuring that Elliott is happy in himself and receiving professional and personalised care to enhance his quality of life.â€
Community Life Choices offers advice and support to adults and children in need of personalised health and social care services. For more information contact firstname.lastname@example.org or call 01772 804088.
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