Rob is a five–year–old boy who lives with his parents and two siblings in Central Scotland. Rob is a child with Autism and learning disabilities. Rob’s mum Cally was first referred to Kindred by the Disability Nurse in the first instance for housing and educational support. When Cally first contacted Kindred, the family of five were squashed into a two-bed flat with no garden.
Kindred advocate, Linda, met with Cally to discuss the impact of the family’s living situation and identified where Kindred could work with the family and the agencies around them to make a positive difference.
“I can’t thank Linda enough – she took a whole family view of us. In meetings she would make things so manageable for me, checking the outcome was what we wanted, focussing on our family’s welfare, and making sure whatever action we took was right for our family.”
Cally shared that she herself is neurodivergent and sometimes finds it difficult in meetings as she over talks, forgets information, struggles with paperwork, organisation and at times struggles to put that information together so Linda’s knowledge, support and understanding are “the biggest thing to me.”
Linda supported the family’s housing application with the local housing association and the family had their housing needs reassessed. They were successfully rehoused in a new housing estate nearby in a suitable house with a garden.
After chatting to Cally, Linda also started support with benefits claim for Rob. Cally’s original claim had been denied but Linda was able to take the DLA application to a DLA tribunal and successfully argued for the high-rate disability previously denied to the family which meant they were able to apply for a car through the Motability car lease scheme.
Cally felt she wasn’t being heard in regard to Rob’s educational needs and Linda helped Rob’s voice be heard in the placing request process. Cally is delighted that Rob’s placing request was granted and Linda’s support at school meetings and visits were invaluable. Cally believes Linda’s knowledge of autism (and particularly ‘masking’ i.e., hiding autism traits) meant the nursery Rob attended listened to her request for a split placement, taking into account Rob’s needs, safety concerns etc.
Cally says Linda’s support “has made a massive difference to Rob’s wellbeing.” She says that Linda ensures Rob’s school give him the right support and make the changes that allow him to be himself. Cally says “Linda’s support has taken my family from a hole to the top of the hill, all in 6 months!” We don’t know where we would have been without Linda, we’d have no suitable house, transport and Rob wouldn’t have the right educational support”. Talking of Kindred’s support, Cally said “Wonderful people make life better”.