Dimensions Outreach – Stuart’s story
Stuart* is a man in his thirties who has autism and a learning disability. He used to visit a day centre, which was safe, but didn’t deliver support personalised to his choices. Stuart’s family wanted to see him making the most of his life.
Working with Stuart and his family, our Outreach team started supporting him, and it has made all the difference. He has a strong relationship with his regular support worker, Pete*, whose support has increased his confidence and independence immeasurably. His team helped secure two volunteering positions based on his interests and he is thriving.
Stuart loves cleaning, tidying and organising. Recognising that these interests could be useful to business, his staff worked with the local Sainsbury’s to secure a position there. Stuart now spends one afternoon a week helping with the recycling, clearing boxes, tidying and organising.
If you miss Stuart at Sainsbury’s, you are quite likely to catch him at working at a London train station. He’s been a lifelong fan of trains and is thrilled with his second job as a ‘Platform Checker.’
Every Tuesday he arrives at the station with Pete and, well known to the station staff, heads through the barriers to carry out a series of checks on each platform. Stuart is responsible for making sure there isn’t any litter or graffiti and checking the bins, lights and signs. He reports any issues directly to the station master.
When Stuart first started he would stay for 15 minutes checking one platform. Sometimes he found the noise of the trains overwhelming and wasn’t able to concentrate on the job for very long. He now works for around 45 minutes checking as many as six platforms.
Stuart says that he is much happier now than he was at the day centre, and cites meeting more girls as a particular highlight of his work!
*names have been changed to protect privacy