Twelve months ago, Leanna Carey would keep herself to herself in her bedroom at Coneyhurst Lodge in Worthing, our residential care home for adults with complex health needs.
Coneyhurst Lodge’s deputy manager, Daniel Adams, who arrived in September 2016, said proudly: “Over the past year, Leanna has come on leaps and bounds.”
Leanna has severe learning difficulties, and is on the autism spectrum. She has lived at Coneyhurst Lodge, where she has had one-to-one support, for more than three years.
Daniel added: “She was a very challenging lady who could not express her needs. She could get very angry, was very withdrawn, and staff often did not really know how to work with her because of her communication difficulties.”
Staff at Coneyhurst Lodge discussed how best to support Leanna and then worked together to address her needs. They soon started to see a welcome transformation.
Daniel said: “Leanna now says more than 30 different words, and is really expressing herself.
“She has changed from a very tense, closed, person who staff had some tremendous difficulties with to being someone who greets you in the morning with a lovely smile.
“She used to get angry a lot, but now she smiles, she sings, she is much happier, and there has been a significant reduction in the number of behaviour-related incidents.
“Her knowledge and learning has come on so well, her trust in the stuff has really grown, and she is now coming to staff when she wants some food or wants to do some activities, which she never used to do, and feels much more comfortable walking around the house, rather than confining herself to her room.”
Leanna loves messy play and sensory play, story time and singing nursery rhymes but, more than anything else, loves water, and often walks around the home with water guns.”
Leanna’s mum has also noticed some considerable improvements in Leanna’s behaviour, and the two are spending a lot more time together.
Daniel said: “This is not just a great story for Leanna and her family, but for the staff here too, who have worked hard to help bring about this transformation, and who have all seen such a positive change in Leanna - who is becoming more confident, more independent and who is generally much happier, which is so rewarding to see.”
Coneyhurst Lodge offers 24-hour residential care; the property has two lounges, and there are additional rooms to ensure that space is available if individuals want some quiet time away from the main lounge area.
There is also a fully-equipped sensory room and an activity room in the garden.
Families or individuals wishing for more information should contact Guy Page on 07773 746 614.