…and Milestonez is no different!
Milestonez is a new part of day opportunities provider, Rockspur. When Rockspur was set up it aimed to provide support for adults with learning disabilities in the Codsall area. As a result of its growing popularity and reputation for being a high quality, user-led organisation, it has grown to include further groups in Cannock and Cannock Chase. Manager Sue Baldwin and the Rockspur Directors, Jayne and Simon, noticed that there was a lack of support for young people in the Cannock area. Sue has a wealth of knowledge and experience in providing support for people with learning disabilities, including challenging behaviour, mental health and complex needs. This includes working at a residential home for those who have behaviours that challenge and also worked at Codsall Day Service as an Officer and team leader. Meanwhile, Laura Spragg had moved from working for Staffordshire County Council to the private sector and had also noticed a gap in the support for young people. Laura had previously worked at Chase Day Service for 9 years and moved to Independent Futures working as an IF worker, providing her with an in-depth knowledge of caring for those with a range of learning disabilities as well as assessing individuals, support planning and managing individual budgets.
Sue and Laura had worked together through Laura’s previous role as an IF worker and always got along well. Another common denominator for Sue and Laura is a local amateur dramatics group; Seasons Theatre Company. Sue and Rockspur had helped Seasons get up and running and helped it to become independent of Rockspur. It continues to grow and flourish every year. Laura is a member of the cast and volunteers at Seasons as this supports adults and young people with learning disabilities, autism and Asperger’s syndrome to have the opportunity to perform on stage.
And so the conversation came around to the lack of support for young adults, as they had both known individuals who could benefit from a service, and so the idea of Milestonez was born! Sue and Laura are both passionate about providing a forward thinking service which encourages people to be as independent as possible. Sue believes that having strong community ties promotes inclusion and reduces isolation, which many adults with learning disabilities can feel. But what could they do that was new and different? Laura wanted to provide a service that was upbeat and fresh whilst Sue wanted something that was flexible and reflected Rockspur’s way of working. Due to Laura’s knowledge of assessment and care planning she knew how services are reviewed and she wanted to ensure that Milestonez had clear aims to support people to reach their goals. Milestonez grew from an idea to becoming a reality. In January 2017 Laura joined the Rockspur team to lead the Milestonez project and get it up and running.
And as they say, the rest is history!