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Commendation for Highland Project At National Care Awards (16/06/08)
A training programme developed by The Highland Council’s Social Work Services, NHS Highland and other key partners has received a special commendation award at Scotland’s National Care Accolades.
The “Love Is… working with people with learning disabilities about relationships and sexuality” project was entered into the Innovative and/or imaginative learning and development in the workplace category. Although South Lanarkshire Council scoped the top prize, The Highland Council’s Social Work Services team were presented with a special commendation award by TV star Kaye Adams who hosted the event in the Glasgow Hilton Hotel.
The new training programme now being rolled out across the Highlands has been developed by The Highland Council in partnership with NHS Highland, Brook Highland, People First, Health and Happiness, Terence Higgins Trust, the Highland Learning Disabilities and Relationships Group, service users and carers. It seeks to help staff to change their practice in a very important and significant way, by supporting people with learning disabilities to develop and sustain a range of relationships, including sexual relationships, in a healthy, informed and safe manner. It switches the focus from the protection of people who may be vulnerable to the empowerment and education of people so that they become less vulnerable.
The Highland Council’s Director of Social Work Harriet Dempster praised the Highland team for doing so well. She said: “These national awards recognise best practice throughout the social service sector and it is a credit to all the hard work of the team to receive a commendation. Across the country there is a lot of excellent work being done to address the issues facing social services in Scotland today. One thing that made our project stand out amongst other entries was the close involvement of service users. By speaking and more importantly listening to what users say they need, we are able to develop services to specifically meet their aspirations.”
Councillor Margaret Davidson, Chairman of the Council’s Housing and Social Work Committee added her congratulations to everyone involved. She said: “This has been an excellent project which has given a meaningful voice to service users in the planning and delivery of training. I’m delighted to see the efforts of everyone who has worked on “Love Is..” be rewarded.”