‘Exemplary’ support for young people

“It’s an exemplary service that meets the highest standards and exhibits best practice.” Inspector Linda Taylor is giving her opinion on Loretto Care South Lanarkshire Young Persons’ Intensive Outreach Service.

The team at Loretto Care

Based in Hamilton, the service is for young people in their late teens and early 20s who are homeless, or at risk of becoming homeless, but are preparing for a tenancy in South Lanarkshire.

“The people who receive care and support are very involved in how the service develops,” added Linda.

The service’s extensive activities have included a music group designed to stamp out the stigma of mental health, which went on to stage a successful concert in Glasgow.

An event was held where Lloyds Bank staff worked with young people and staff to develop their IT skills, and young people are piloting a new SQA award focusing on tenancy and citizenship.

An internal initiative called “The Lens”– based on the “Dragons Den” model – allows staff and young people to pitch ideas that are judged by a panel that includes a service user. A recent staff suggestion for an internet café secured funding and it will open in April 2017.

“I’ve rarely seen a service where staff are so committed, enthusiastic and motivated,” said Linda. “They feel well supported, valued and listened to, and all have a specific area of responsibility, such as health and wellbeing.”

Sharon Fleming, Service Manager,said: “Personalisation and having service users at the heart of everything we do underpins our philosophy. From the minute we receive a referral we take our direction from that young person.”