Learning disabilities affect the way a person takes on skills and knowledge, understands information, and communicates with other people. Down’s syndrome is probably the most commonly known condition.
Learning disabilities can be:
A learning disability can also be diagnosed as a profound and multiple learning disability, (which is known as PMLD). Having a profound and multiple disability is where the person:
- is unable to communicate at all
- has at least one other disability, such as autism or physical disabilities
Learning disabilities are usually diagnosed at birth. However, other disabilities do not become noticeable until later, such as when child should be talking or walking.
Learning disability services in Solihull
People living with mild and moderate learning disabilities are often able to live full and independent lives.
For example, many disabled people need nothing more than 1 or 2 simple aids that would make all the difference to day-to-day activities, such as:
Other people may need a lot more care and support. The carers of people living with learning disabilities will also need support to carry on with their important role.
The Solihull Directory also has details of care providers in and around Solihull.
Disability Facilities Grant
If home adaptations would help you live with your learning disability, or care for someone living with disability, a Disabled Facilities Grant may be available. A grant can be made for home adaptations such as:
- wider doors and doorframes
- ramps and half steps
- stair lifts
- heating and lighting systems improvements
An occupational therapy assessment and a financial assessment will be needed to see what work is required and how much it costs.
To apply, contact Solihull Connect:
- on 0121 704 8000
NHS help for people with learning disabilities
If you are concerned about the development of your child, your GP will be able to conduct an initial examination and make a referral to suitable health workers, such as:
- educational and clinical psychologists
- speech and language therapists
The NHS Choices website has a lot of information and advice about different types of learning disability and how they affect people.
SoLO Life Opportunities (SoLO)
The SoLO Life Opportunities charity enables adults and young people living with a learning disability to live as full, active and enjoyable a life as possible.
The charity is based in Solihull and also provides valuable time off and respite for carers and families.
You can visit the SoLO Life Opportunities website to find out more information about how it works with people with moderate, severe and profound and multiple learning disabilities, to provide:
- opportunities for adults
- opportunities for young people
- opportunities for children
- personal assistants for carers and families
Solihull Action through Advocacy (SATA)
Solihull Action through Advocacy works to make sure that people with learning disabilities have the same rights as everyone else and do not face social exclusion. It works with anyone living in Solihull with a learning disability who is over the age of 18 and parents with learning disabilities or difficulties.
You can visit the Solihull Action through Advocacy website to learn about its services for vulnerable people, including:
- Peer Advocacy - Peer Advocacy supports people to speak out about things that matter to them
- Statutory Advocacy: IMCA, DoLS, and Care Act - Independent Mental Capacity Advocates (IMCAs) work with people who have been assessed as lacking capacity to make specific decisions
- Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards - IMCAs get involved when decisions are being made about depriving people of their liberty and there is no-one available to consult about the decision
- The ACE Community Project - a Lottery Funded project is about Aspirations, Choice, and Empowerment
- Parents Advocacy - Parents with learning difficulties can and do make good parents, sometimes they need extra support to do this
- Relevant Persons Representative (RPR) - When Deprivation of Liberty order is authorised and the person being deprived of their liberty has no person who can appropriately advocate for them then a RPR is requested by social services
- Care Act Advocacy - Care Act advocates offer advocacy to adults with a learning disability and older adults in Solihull
It also offers commissioned services to companies, private groups and tenants and resident associations. These services include workshops and assistance in the recruitment of people with learning disabilities
National help for people with learning disabilities
There are a number of national organisations which provide essential help and advice for those with learning difficulties, their carers and parents.
Mencap is the charity dedicated to working with people with learning disabilities, as well as their families and carers. You can visit the Mencap website to learn about the extensive information, specialist support services, projects and learning disability training it offers.
Other organisations and website you may be interested in working with include:
- Foundation for People with Learning Disabilities
- Down’s Syndrome Association
- British Institute of Learning Disabilities (BILD)
- The National Autistic Society
- Autism West Midlands
- Autism Connect
Community Advice Hubs
Visiting your local Community Information and Advice Hub could put you in contact with support that is right for you. It offers face-to-face help and advice and provides information about activities in your area that could help. The hubs also provide advice for a range of issues. You can visit the hubs in:
When things become difficult
Solihull Council can provide care and support for people living with learning disabilities.
If you are finding it very difficult to live safely at home and are concerned, you can contact the Solihull adult social care team to request an assessment.
A qualified worker will work with you, and your carer or representative if you would like, to discuss your needs and identify how to help.
The assessment will take place in your own home or wherever is most convenient for you. If you prefer, you can also complete an assessment online or visit your local hub for help completing your assessment.
The assessment process will discuss what support you need to let you live your life in the best way possible, from understanding your care and support needs to helping maintain and improve your personal wellbeing.
Daytime opportunities for people with learning disabilities
There are a number of opportunities in and around Solihull throughout the day to help you get active, get out and about and get involved with your local community.
Many of the services take place in local leisure facilities as well as in other community areas, both indoor and outdoors.
If you are 18 years old or older, you can take a look at the opportunities available with the Day services for people with disabilities page.