How do I match the right support to me?

An example of how one woman uses her one-page profile to ensure the right support team are matched to her and that the people in her life respect her decisions, supporting her in the things that she has stated as important.

Denise's one-page profile

Denise’s one-page profile

Written by Dimensions 

Denise is an elected member of learning disability and autism support provider Dimensions’ Council. She is also very talented at knitting blankets and scarves and has recently moved in with her fiancé, Stuart. Denise has a learning disability and receives paid-support from Dimensions.

Denise has a one-page profile to let her staff and others that spend time with her know what is important to her and how best to support her. In particular, this is useful for new people in Denise’s life as she feels it is very important for them to understand who she is and the things that matter to her quickly. She hopes it will give her staff team the confidence to support her in the right way, right from the start. It is used to introduced new people to Denise so that they get to know her well, especially the section on what others ‘like and admire’ about her. The profile is a key element of her support plan and it will change and evolve depending on where she is in her life and what she wants to achieve.

Denise’s one-page profile lets people know that there are some things she knows she can let slip around the house, and she gives permission to people to sometimes encourage her to gets things done. As a clear boundary, she also states that her decisions need to be respected and that this is very important to her. This has helped clarify her support team’s role, and also helped keep Denise in control.

Her one-page profile also makes it very clear that to make decisions she needs the right information at hand. This has proved very useful for her time on the Dimensions’ Council (and other groups she has attended) as her support worker goes through items in detail with Denise so she can have confidence in her opinion on matters that arise.

Finally, Denise makes it very clear in her one-page profile that Stuart (her fiancé) is a very important part of her life and that he supports and cares for her. This has helped her support team recognise that their role when Denise and Stuart are together changes quite a lot, as when they are together they are very independent and private.

Denise’s one-page profile has a number of uses and has been a real success. It relies on people taking it seriously and putting its content into action as Denise can be a shy person and at times will not always stress its importance. The key to its success is getting the right staff match for Denise, and using the one-page profile to define further their relationship and what ‘good’ support looks like to Denise.