Posted 12:31PM on Tuesday 20 October 2015
In September last year, James moved into his new house, supported by our Crescent Supported Living Service in Belfast. When we first met James, his piercing blue eyes and his infectious laugh had us all captured. James is a very energetic and friendly young man who enjoys the company of “positive” people, especially those who can “keep up” with him! Having previously lived in a children’s home, James was used to living in an environment with many restrictions, for example, having to ask for a glass of water or bathroom doors being locked when not in use. James also didn’t have any means of transport so in the early days with Positive Futures, James and his staff team did a lot of walking!
What a difference a year makes! In September this year, James celebrated his first year being supported by the Service and his 19th birthday. This was a very exciting day for James’ staff team, his parents and, most of all, James. James is now very happy in his home and takes a lot of pride in it. In James’ new home, there are minimal restrictions – James can now get a glass of water from his kitchen whenever he wants. James has been learning so much about cooking and loves to prepare his own meals with a little help from staff and smell the ingredients – his favourite dish is curry. Now, James also has his own car and really enjoys going on day trips to the beach or exploring a new park with his staff team. These are all things that James previously didn’t have the opportunity to do.
James has built a unique bond with his staff team and every day we are learning new ways of providing the support James chooses to have. James has a really exciting year ahead with his Planning Live events and the staff team hope that, with a tailored support plan in place, James will be able to do a lot more and possibly have a holiday.
James’ parents, Lynne and Jason, had a fantastic day at the party to celebrate James’ birthday and first anniversary with Positive Futures, saying:
“It’s hard to believe that James is not only 19, but also celebrating his first year with Positive Futures. With James’ particular challenges, it’s been a learning curve for everyone over the last 12 months, but he has settled in extremely well with his Positive Futures team. It’s also been a great journey for us to watch him grow and develop further with their help, and it was obvious during his 19th birthday party that he is very comfortable with his team and that he has developed a real bond with them. Plus, how often do you get the opportunity get onto a Spiderman bouncy castle in your backyard, which both he & we enjoyed!”
James’ Mum made a special chocolatey birthday cake with James’ picture on it that James shared with everyone.