Day Services are generally for those adults with intellectual or multiple disabilities who do not have the capacity for sheltered workshop or outside employment.
Those who attend ‘Day Services’ frequently have limited communications ability, and need to have a ‘Communications Diary’ to facilitate two-way communications of their welfare between their home and the day service.
The main intention of ‘Day Service’ is not the general belief of somewhere to pass the time. It is to help improve the quality of life of those with limited capacity by helping them learn new skills, both intellectual and community based
Those with limited capacity frequently need significant support, reinforcement and encouragement from all their life areas. Basically, they need their home and the day service to work together to provide the person with coordinated direction.
Consistent and valued coordinated direction rarely occurs for many of those living in group homes, especially DHS group homes. As most day services are well aware of many DHS group homes being little more than basic minder care.
And, as most day services are funded by DHS, they do not want to make waves with DHS group homes. So the silo effect remains to limit those already limited by their disability.
Extracts from the Senior Practitioner’s Report dated May 2009, in relation to ‘basic minder care’:
• The findings of this study clearly show that power rests to a substantial degree with direct support staff. Their requirement to meet organisational needs is often at the expense of ‘client’ choice.
• “Like all of us, we get bored if there is nothing to do…. What are staff: minders or carers? Staff should be interacting with the residents …. Not just domestic work and not interacting. Staff were on the porch smoking, with nothing to do!
• When the professional assumes there is nothing the service can do, then the service does nothing!
• In many circumstances, families have had to argue their case to the very top, and then make it a public issue before their voices are heard.
• Organisations inevitably protect themselves. This mean the system of reporting incidents becomes adversarial.
• Staff have significant powers to choose how environments are organised, to develop formal and informal rules for how services operate [“This is lore!” Lore is developed and maintained as a direct result of poor management – reactive, rather than proactive management]