Welcome back: Learning Disabilities customer has a new home after 13 years away

Published: 23rd June 2022
Look Ahead is working with NHS England and a local council to develop a support service for a man who has been living in a secure setting in Yorkshire for over 13 years.

Paul (name changed to protect identity) aged 34, has a learning disability, Autism and associated sensory issues and OCD. Paul was previously placed in a secure setting hundreds of miles from his family who live near London.

This week he moves into his own two-bedded home where he has been involved in choosing everything from the flooring, to the wall colours and furniture. Paul’s home has been carefully designed to meet his needs.

Debbie Neill, Director of Learning Disabilities and Autism says: “Look Ahead has been working in partnership with everyone involved in Paul’s life to ensure we deliver an effective transition for Paul into his new home, supported by our in-area service. It is amazing to see how engaged Paul is in designing his environment, and how excited he is to be finally moving into the community near to his family. The property has been purchased and adapted using a grant from NHS England. We’ve worked closely with Paul, his mum and the Commissioners to make sure the support we are putting in place will make this placement a success. There has been a lot of work done to ensure his physical environment works for him and is safe and comfortable.

I’ve worked in the sector for many years and as we approach another Learning Disability Week it saddens me that we still see too many people living in unsuitable environments, denied the opportunity to live fulfilled lives in the community. Look Ahead is committed to working with commissioners to develop services and find great accommodation which will give more people the same opportunities as we can now give Paul.

Let’s make 2022/23 the year that we really make a difference as a sector by highlighting what great housing with support looks like.”

Paul’s Social Worker says: “Working in partnership with Look Ahead has and continues to be an absolute privilege where ‘real’ opportunity takes place to enable ‘real life’. Their underpinning values, the skills of the teams and the relationships they establish drives forward opportunity. I am particularly struck by their dedication and ability to support citizens’ strengths by working together and with families by being creative, kind and fun but also with expertise and exceptional professional advocacy. I know that for the individual people including Paul that I support, this opportunity enables them to meet their own aspirations whilst also feeling safe and secure.”

About Look Ahead

Look Ahead is a leading provider of care and support services working with a range of customers across London and South East England.

Look Ahead has decades of experience in delivering learning disability & Autism, mental health, homelessness, and young people’s services. Look Ahead currently delivers around 21specialist learning disability and Autism services for local authorities and CCGs, including a national award-winning residential service.


For further information contact:

Clare Wilson
Head of Communications / 07970 634510


Or Edward Rowe

External Communications and Projects Manager / 07464 927964