In a care sector first, CMG – a leading provider of learning disability care – recently held a successful day-long event aimed at strengthening the links between the organisation and the families of the individuals it supports.
Around 80 relatives attended the Family Conference in East Molesey, Surrey. The event featured talks from leading figures in the sector, four interactive workshops and a performance from The Brelade Players – a drama group made up of individuals CMG supports.
Andrea Sutcliffe, the Chief Inspector of Adult Social Care at the Care Quality Commission, opened the event. She took the audience through how the regulator inspects adult social care services and outlined the key attributes they have found in the services they have rated as Outstanding, including CMG’s The Ridgeway service in East London.
Vivien Cooper, the Founder of the Challenging Behaviour Foundation, then gave a presentation on how carers can best work with families of the people they support. Vivien also spoke very movingly about her own experiences with her son who has a learning disability. The talks from the keynote speakers were followed by interactive workshops, which covered topics such as best practice in supporting people on the autistic spectrum and promoting positive coping skills.
As well as offering vital guidance to families, the workshops also provided an excellent opportunity for them to meet with other people in similar situations and share their experiences. The day was rounded off with a performance from The Brelade Players. The theatre group – made up of people CMG supports – delighted the audience with a variety of sketches they helped write and direct. Exit surveys from the Conference suggest it was a huge success: 100% of respondents either agreed or strongly agreed that they found the event useful and all respondents also agreed that both the presentations and workshops were helpful.
Chief Inspector of Adult Social Care at the Care Quality Commission, Andrea Sutcliffe, said:
“It was a real pleasure to speak at CMG’s first ever Family Conference and share information about the work CQC does with the families of people who use their services. “Anyone who lives with a learning disability has the right to expect person-centred care and be treated with dignity and respect. The event was a great opportunity to hear more about what is important to families, and I hope everyone who attended enjoyed the day as much as I did.”
Peter Kinsey, Chief Executive of CMG, said: “The feedback we’ve received from attendees has been resoundingly positive. As an organisation we are wholly committed to working with families as we all want the very best for their loved one. “We hope to organise a similar event next year and we’ve already had some excellent suggestions from families of topics we could cover.” A family member who attended the Family Conference said: “Thank you to all involved in organising the day. Not only did we enjoy the event, we also learned a lot.”