Natalie* had been a looked after child who experienced numerous different placements. As a young adult she struggled to sustain successful living arrangements of her own, and after a brief spell living with her parents, she was referred to Key, age 21, due to family relationship breakdown.
She was initially allocated a place in Askins Lodge, Key’s 17-bed supported accommodation property, but struggled with communal living. Within a matter of months, following a series of incidents of challenging and abusive behaviour, Natalie was served with an eviction order.
Discussions took place between Key and Children’s Services to find temporary accommodation for Natalie in the first instance, and longer-term, to put a plan in place more suitable to her needs. A move-on property in the community was proposed where she would live solo with an intensive support package delivered by Key’s Resettlement and Retainment team, along with her social worker.
Natalie is progressing well living semi-independently. She is very house proud and has demonstrated many of the skills needed to manage a successful tenancy. Although financial responsibility is something she has struggled with previously, she usually manages her monies and outgoings well, despite a very tight budget due to fines and debts from her previous lifestyle; recently she has even made a first payment towards her arrears from supported accommodation, a sign of her growing maturity.
Natalie can be an unpredictable character at times and the team have sought to help her address her behaviour so she can be more successful at maintaining positive interpersonal relationships in future. Support staff motivate Natalie by acting as positive role models, treating her fairly, with compassion and respect and offer her practical and emotional support whilst managing her expectations. The approach has paid off and her dealings with others have improved as a result.
The overall goal of course has been preparing Natalie for independent living. Support has focused on building her confidence, recognising her progress, raising her aspirations, and encouraging her to be proactive in how her future develops so she moves on in a positive way. She is now ready to take the next step and apply for her own council home.
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*Please note that names may have been changed and stock photography used to preserve the anonymity of this young person