Adults in Herefordshire want to see a greater range of activities on offer across the county that people, including those with disabilities, can access. They also think that having a place to meet other people is one of the biggest issues when it comes to accessing day activities.
These are the key findings published in a day activities survey undertaken by the council earlier this year. During May and June, the council’s adults and wellbeing directorate worked with local care and support organisations to gather the views of people who regularly attend day activities*, as well as those who might wish to do so in the future. One to one discussions, surveys and focus groups were undertaken to help the council understand what services people are using at the moment and what they would like to access in the future.
It follows a change in approach over the last few years which has seen traditional day centres develop more customer-led activities with people exercising choice and control over how they spend their personal budgets**. For example, many people who used to visit a traditional day centre a number of times a week may now employ personal assistants who can take them to different activities or venues depending what they’re interested in.
Councillor Patricia Morgan, cabinet member for health and wellbeing, said: “We know that people live better lives when they remain independent. Keeping well and participating in social activity is a very important part of this, particularly for those who are vulnerable.
“We have talked to people who use these services and they have told us quite clearly that they want a broader range of activities and a more flexible time structure – for example, lots of people want to undertake activities in the evening rather than the day time.
“We will pass this information onto local groups and organisations across the county so that they understand demand better and can consider creative ways of meeting this.”
*relates to people who have assessed needs, particularly those with learning disabilities and older people.
**sum of money allocated to you as a result of an assessment of your needs. The amount of money you are awarded is based on the 'eligible needs' you have at that time.