What was the issue you were addressing or working on?
MHPS sets out to maintain people independently and safely in their own homes and communities, which has been a key aspiration of all of Moray’s Reshaping Care for Older People Change Plans so far. The partners (NHS, council, third and private sectors) recognise that the small cost of helping maintain independence in this way can represent significant value for money when compared with the costs that result from that independence diminishing.
Such costs might be significant, for example, the cost of admission to hospital or a move to residential care. Local councillors have been especially supportive and this type of service is viewed as an essential part of the picture of support in Moray.
What you did?
MHPS undertakes simple, straightforward DIY-type repairs around the home for those unable to do so for themselves. It works with people of all ages in varied circumstances, for example, people with mental health issues and single parents with financial difficulties. However, unsurprisingly older people make up the lion’s share of its clients.
The average age of MHPS service-users is seventy-three. To make the best use of its resources and volunteer time, the project also tries to make sure that those whom it supports are those for whom there is little or no viable alternative.
At present, the service utilises around 40 volunteers, who use their own transport. The long-term presence of the RAF in Moray means service personnel have played a big part in MHPS’s volunteer effort, with around 50% of volunteers at any one time being serving RAF personnel or veterans.
What were the outcomes - benefits or otherwise?
Equally importantly, the partners recognise the importance of the ‘personal outcomes’ such support can help to achieve. A sense of independence feeds directly into feelings of confidence and being able to cope, which of course helps people actually cope. MHPS assesses success through the testimony of the people who use the service. This is expressed in the ‘comments, compliments & complaints’ form which service users are asked to fill in and which frequently contains praise for the attitude of volunteers.
To read some of the project testimonials click here.
Contacts - to find out more
Dave Townsend, firstname.lastname@example.org
01343 543 490