Family Support - Case Studies

Young people with learning disabilities often miss out on the chance to do something that is both challenging and personally rewarding. Our aim is to change that. We work with individuals, families, community partners and care professionals to help provide progressive opportunities for these young people that allows them to grow and be ambitious.

ICD work with families to support young people to transition to adulthood, These are just a few examples of support we have recently provided.


Case Study - 1

B is a young adult with a rare genetic condition which presents similarly to autism and LD. B’s parents were not sure where to start as B approached leaving college, and they admitted to not being confident in meetings.


ICD helped B’s parents to identify B’s preferences and strengths, and researched options post-college. They then supported B and family at the college review, a social care review and at visits to service providers. ICD worked with B’s parents to make a case for the care package they wanted, and to apply for places in each service.


It was apparent during the process that people often ‘put words into B’s mouth’ due to communication difficulties - ICD produced choice boards so that B could express preferences without influence. B is now starting the new activities one at a time, and is settling well into a varied weekly schedule, based on their own preferences and wishes.


As an extra request from B’s sister, ICD produced a list of apps for B to use on a phone or Ipad to facilitate choice, communication and support change from one task to another.

Choice Board1.JPG

Case Study - 2

G is 16 years old, with a moderate learning disability and significant speech, language and communication difficulties. G was educated at home from a young age, and it was quickly apparent that G’s parents had done an outstanding job of developing them both academically and in terms of life skills. In fact it was hard to see where ICD could help!


However it became apparent that G had major issues around food. Add this to years of home education, and the target of going back into an educational setting post-16, and we had two areas to address: Giving G confidence to work with, and push his own boundaries around an unfamiliar adult, and solving the anxiety inducing lunch situation. G also mentioned wanting to be able to draw better, particularly manga characters.


ICD established G’s ‘safe’ list of foods and discussed this with his college, also establishing that G would have somewhere that he could heat up his own food. This discussion created anxiety, which ICD had anticipated. They bought and demonstrated to G a set of highly structured books on how to draw manga figures. This created a distraction and a more relaxed mood to further discussion, as well as building trust.


After a few meetings and with plenty of warning, G was accompanied to a supermarket with the target to buy ingredients and make a packed lunch - this was completed successfully.  This was then repeated, and as well as creating confidence around food issues, it also created a confidence in working with unfamiliar adults in new challenging situations.


This was not easy for G, and as a reward ICD arranged for him to have a session on their Virtual Reality headset!  Aside from working directly with G, ICD realised that G’s food issues were much more than being a ‘picky eater’ and introduced the family to the condition ARFID (Avoidant Restrictive Food Intake Disorder). They also produced a supportive letter for G’s parents to make a case for continued Speech and Language Therapy post-16.

Case Study - 3

W is an intelligent and articulate 14 year old, who has cerebral palsy and uses a wheelchair. Currently at the high school they have been at since 11 years old, they had a strong preference for another school post-16 and were worried that they wouldn’t be listened to or taken seriously.


In order to provide W with an effective voice, it was necessary to assess W’s strengths and preferences, and then to research the two schools to assess ‘best fit’ and to make a case. W participated in the research well, and with ICDs support was able to build an argument for the school they wanted, based on their ability, needs, preferences and each school’s provision. This was researched past the next school and on to college, so that W knew exactly what provision was needed at each stage.


ICD and W prepared a statement to be read at his annual review. ICD are awaiting the review date and will support W to ensure their voice is heard. In the meantime, ICD and W have been experimenting with apps to improve the accessibility of YouTube on Ipads, a notoriously tricky issue, but one we won’t give up on!


Case Study - 4

F is 14, with a range of moderate, complex learning disabilities. F’s parents have their own significantly sized business, which they hoped F would take a role in - but how and what?


F’s mother is very involved in the local Parent/Carer Forum and is knowledgeable and confident, but wanted a second opinion as F progressed through the transition process. ICD agreed to meet and carry out a review of the EHC Plan to ensure it was addressing transition to adulthood adequately. Happily this particular EHC Plan was excellent, with a clear pathway as to how the targets in it would be developed further.


Subsequently ICD completed their Transition Passport for F, which highlighted considerable strengths, and clarified areas for the family to work on around independence. A report set out which areas needed to be developed and how, with ideas pertinent to the family setting and situation. F’s mother is more than capable to work on these without support, unless requested.


Lastly ICD explained the benefits and processes around Supported Internships, which would potentially work well to train F for a role in the family business. F’s family were left to progress with their transition plans, knowing that they could come back for support if needed.