This year Mencap's Learning Disability Week is from 14 - 20 June with the theme of celebrating art and creativity.
Getting involved in creativity and self-expression can help improve people's mental health and lead to greater community inclusion. For many people with a learning disability and their families and carers, getting creative has been a way to stay connected and positive through the challenges of the last year.
To celebrate Learning Disability Week people who access Wiltshire Council's services are using art and creativity. Those attending Wiltshire Council's in-house provider services have been involved in art projects in the lead up to the national week, including painting, designing posters and puzzles and creating short videos.
Conservative led Wiltshire Council works with the Wiltshire Parent and Carer Council (WPCC)) which is encouraging families with children with Special Educational Needs and or Disabilities (SEND) to get creative during the week. It has information and resources on its website which may be helpful for families with children and young people with (SEND) wanting to get creative during the week.
Working in partnership with families is reflected in the wider priorities of the Wiltshire SEND strategy which is available at Local offer.
Wiltshire Council's Community Team for People with Learning Disabilities also works in partnership with Wiltshire Health and Care and Avon and Wiltshire Mental Health Partnership NHS Trust learning disability services to ensure that people with learning disabilities and their families are supported. There is a focus on what people can achieve and enabling them to live full, independent lives.
The teams work with people who have a learning disability to ensure they can access a wide range of services to live fulfilled lives. A key focus of the service is ensuring that the voice of people with learning disabilities is heard. The service is working with the Wiltshire Centre for Independent Living who have set up focus groups with people with lived experience to listen to the views of people with learning disabilities on how Wiltshire Council's learning disabilities services can be developed.
Conservative Cllr Jane Davies, Cabinet Member for Adult Social Care said:
Learning Disability Week is an opportunity to raise awareness of the issues that are important to people with a learning disability and their families and carers.
Throughout the challenges of COVID-19 our teams have found new ways to support people with learning disabilities. Last year when so much was online, we kept in regular contact and worked together to keep people safe and living their 'best life' throughout the pandemic.
Find out more about Learning Disability Week.