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rodney lifeways

Since his youth, Rodney’s spent much of his life in various long-stay hospitals.

Tragically, this meant he’d struggled to build consistent, lasting relationships with other people. And as a result of previous traumas, he presented with behaviours that challenge.

Due to Rodney’s support needs, he’s received psychiatric care from the NHS for the past 16 years.

Yet despite receiving often discouraging news about Rodney’s needs, the team at his Lifeways supported living service in Newark, Nottinghamshire saw his potential for growth.

The real Rodney

Working alongside his NHS psychiatric team, Rodney’s support team worked to safely reduce the level of medication Rodney receives, using the STOMP framework. STOMP stands for stopping over medication of people with a learning disability, autism or both.

Rodney’s support team also received training in Positive Behaviour Support (PBS), Lifeways’ framework relating to behaviours that challenge.

At Lifeways, PBS means working to reframe the way support teams see behaviours that challenge – and to understand why an individual is behaving in a certain way, and what they are trying to communicate.

After close to two years of this new approach, Rodney began to grow and develop independent living skills - and his personality has blossomed.

Rodney’s built up relationships with his support team and peers who live in the area. He also enjoys going out every day, taking part in different activities. Instead of using behaviour to communicate with his team, Rodney talks about his needs.

“We started to see the real Rodney, kind, caring, loving and most of all funny!” said Georgia Hooley, Service Manager.


Then, a milestone: earlier this month, Georgia and Rodney attended a psychiatry meeting, where after 16 years, Rodney was discharged from their care. One of Rodney’s psychiatrists called it the ‘best success story we have had in a very long time, if ever!’

Rodney’s mum, Marie, says his progress is “mind-blowing.”

“Honestly I can’t believe the difference in my son, what the staff have achieved is mind-blowing.

“The world is Rodney’s oyster now. Well done to everyone involved and thank you from the bottom of my heart.”

Rodney’s happy with his personal growth – and the close bond he’s formed with his team.

“I love my staff,” Rodney says. “They make me the best cups of tea, they make me smile, thank you everyone.”

About Lifeways:

Lifeways supports adults with diverse and complex needs. These needs include learning disabilities, physical disabilities, autism, mental health conditions, and acquired brain injuries.

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:  

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