Skip to main content

We’re recruiting across the UK – apply today


It's Learning Disability (LD) Week 2023! This week, from 19-25 June, we'll be running stories on social media and our website all about the individuals we support.

Dawn, who lives at Winterley Lane, our Walsall supported living service, is enjoying life and becoming more active after receiving support from her Lifeways team.

Dawn is in her fifties. Before coming to Lifeways, she lived in her family home with her children, had a job, and enjoyed an active lifestyle. Tragically, in 2006, she suffered a life-changing stroke.

Immediately after the incident, Dawn spent a long time in intensive care. Her medical team were at one point very close to turning off her life support machine, but she miraculously pulled through and started her rehabilitation.

As a result of the stroke, Dawn has reduced intellectual ability, reduced verbal processing, reduced concentration functions, and impaired memory.

After lengthy periods of rehabilitation at the Moseley Hall Hospital in Birmingham, followed by a stay at a specialist centre, Dawn made an unsuccessful move to sheltered housing.

Dawn has three children, two sons and one daughter. At the time of her stroke, Dawn’s sons were 17 and 20, and her daughter was 7. Their father took over the care of the children.

Active life

In 2011, Dawn moved from the sheltered housing scheme into our Walsall supported living service, which is a two-bedroom bungalow with a living room, kitchen, and a conservatory.

Over the years, Dawn’s support team have worked with her to the point where she now enjoys an active life.

Dawn has been at Walsall College for the past two years studying drama and music, and she will finish her course this year. Her next plans are to swap her college days with swimming instead. She enjoys doing arts and crafts at home.

Her support team have worked with Dawn over the years to support her with her behaviours. They also support her to keep active, minimizing distractions that cause challenging behaviours, and making sure things are relayed to her in simple terms so she doesn’t become overwhelmed.

Dawn’s support team make sure to give her praise when she has done things well and redirect her when things aren’t going so well and help her move back into positive impacts in her life. – need to rephrase this section!

“Dawn is a true inspiration to the support we offer,” says Melanie Holden, Dawn’s service manager. “She has grown and grown in independence each year.”

Close bond

She has also formed a close bond with her support team. Dawn also sees her family regularly – and recently attended her son’s wedding, which she was very excited about!

“She got all glammed up for the big day and she spoke so much about it afterwards,” says Melanie. “Her children are still very much in her life, and now her grandchildren are, and she often has visits from her family.”

“My house is perfect, and I enjoy going out,” says Dawn. “Today, I’m going for a walk, and then I’m going to go and buy a few things from the shops.”

It’s great to support you, Dawn!


About Lifeways:

Lifeways is the UK’s largest team of support professionals providing support for adults in the community.

We support adults with diverse and complex needs, including learning disabilities, autism, physical disabilities, acquired brain injuries, and mental health conditions. 

 As the supported living sector’s largest team of professionals, Lifeways’ extensive experience and national reach mean we deliver extraordinary support to adults, enabling them to live fulfilling and independent lives in the community. 

 Our 11,000 colleagues currently support almost 5,000 individuals who live in our 1,500 supported living and residential services across England, Scotland, and Wales. 

Find out more about how we change people's lives at:  

Follow us on:


More news and events
Find a service
Make a referral
Request a callback
Facebook Facebook Twitter Twitter Instagram You Tube LinkedIn LinkedIn LinkedIn