Case studies

Finding your voice

When we first received the referral for this young person it was clear that she was in an absolute crisis. Needing the support of multiple staff at any one time in her current placement it was clear that she was neither safe, happy, or settled. Her referral details were peppered with incidents of violence and aggression as well as the need for multiple placement moves to keep her and those around her, safe. As a team we agreed to assess her and better understand exactly what she needed.

This young person was deaf and had been since birth. When we visited her, it was evident that she was scared and unable to effectively communicate with those around her and felt truly isolated. It was no wonder that her behaviours spoke volumes about her experiences of life.

Fast forward two years. This young person is supported by staff who through BSL can spontaneously and effectively communicate with her – although she takes every opportunity to laugh at some of the signs and put people right on the right way to do it! She has a voice now, and it is heard.

This vivacious and hilarious young person has been able to express her hopes and dreams and explore what her life will look like going forward. She still faces challenges but can communicate her needs to staff and work through them and has been encouraged to reach out to the deaf community to see how she play an active part of it. She has already had the opportunity to mentor others who have been unsure and wary of reaching out. She has become a really accomplished angler, and regularly amazes the team with the size of her catch (that’s not just a fisherman’s tale!) and continues to dedicate much of her time to horse riding and interaction with animals.

Through consistency of approach and the support of a resilient team she is now a young woman who can go forth into her adult life and pick up and run with the challenges that it will throw at her.

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