What people told us
The Highland Community Care Forum (HCCF) carried out a consultation in summer 2009 which shaped the development of our Joint Community Care Plan. Many of the discussions focused on what being independent meant, what people had found helpful or difficult and what changes or improvements would help them remain at home.
Many people placed a very high value on independence and being able to remain at or return home. For most it did not mean ‘going it alone’ but having access to the right level of help and community support. Some described “interdependence” as a more helpful way to think about how people support each other.
Some of the things people told us that helped them retain independence were:
- Clear communication by service providers so that people know who to speak to, what services were available and how to access them;
- Caring and understanding attitude from service providers (being treated with respect and dignity and as individuals);
- Living in a caring community where they have strong connections with family and supportive friends;
- Being involved in a support group where people can relate to and support each other;
- Appropriate and individual support services so that people can remain at home;
- Preventative care and earlier help can delay or avoid the need for crisis intervention later on (e.g. suitable home adaptations fitted quickly and prompt access to physiotherapy);
- Good respite opportunities for the individual and their carer;
- Adequate financial support relieves the pressure many people experience;
- Good access to transport and personal mobility. This enables people to have the freedom to do what they want when they want to;
- The opportunity to maintain or become socially active was key to people retaining their independence and confidence to live at home;
- Access to meaningful and flexible training, employment or voluntary opportunities enables people to feel more confident and widen their own expectations of living independently.
In addition, this information has helped shape our Areas for change and improvement