Across the grounds at St Elizabeth's, we have 13 purpose-built bungalows to meet the health and social needs of 102 adults with epilepsy. Bungalows have between 5-10 bedrooms, with residents placed with people of a similar age and generally of similar support needs. Each bungalow is named after a significant person or organisation who played a big part in developing our Adult Residential provision over the years - please click here to see our current bungalow names!
As well as a bedroom each for residents (some have an ensuite), each bungalow includes 2 bathrooms, 2 shower rooms, a communal kitchen, lounge, dining room, utility room and an outside area/garden. As a result, each bungalow has a real sense of community alongside promoting individual personalities and interests. Residents are supported by staff to develop skills to maximise their independence in all areas of life.
Each bungalow hosts regular house meetings to discuss different activities and celebrations they can host both at the bungalow and in the community, by utilising our fleet of specially adapted vehicles. Residents have ownership over their home and often decide together if they would like to purchase or fundraise for a new piece of furniture or ornament for everyone to enjoy!
Every bungalow can go on day trips and nights out, with support from staff. This includes anything from shopping, bowling and seaside trips, to spa days, concerts and nights at the local nightclub. It is also an aim that every bungalow go on holiday once a year, using a combination of own funds and fundraising efforts. The destination? Residents decide as a group where they would like to go, whether that be within the UK or further afield. Residents have previously been on trips to Spain and Disneyland Paris.
Residents are encouraged to make their room their own when they move to St Elizabeth's to ease the transition. Perhaps a new wall colour will help to settle in, or maybe a new piece of furniture or a poster of your favourite person? Or maybe a room full of photos of family and friends. Bungalow staff will support residents to settle in and help them make their room as comfortable as possible.
Family and friends can visit at any time (within sociable hours!), and regularly call and/or video call loved ones. There are communal bungalow telephones available at any time during the day or evening. During the year, residents are supported by staff to send birthday cards and presents, go Christmas shopping if they wish or attend any family events they have coming up. Don't forget to take lots of pictures so you can show your housemates when you get back!
Each bungalow has its own committed and experienced staff team who are qualified and trained to meet the needs of the particular clients they support, as well as support their individualised skills development programme. Thus, whilst working to the same high standards across the service, each bungalow has its own unique character.
Many of our residents are assessed as at risk of SUDEP (Sudden Unexplained Deaths in Epilepsy). They may have multiple seizures during the night, so we use a range of methods including a bespoke night monitoring system to alert our night staff to seizures and other incidents.
St Elizabeth's advocate that people aim to make their own decisions and choices, and have a very 'can-do' attitude towards everything. No problem is too big or too small, and want to encourage all of our service-users to feel comfortable to express themselves in a safe and caring environment. All residents are supported to develop independence, with staff promoting a positive attitude to any obstacle they may face.
As well as house meetings, St Elizabeth's host a regular Residents Forum, and host Family Forums four times a year for family and friends to attend. These Forums provide a platform for residents and families to communicate things they feel have worked well, and things that need improving or just need some attention. It is also a chance to voice any concerns, or just to keep in the loop with everything that is going on within Adult Residential Services. To accompany this, each bungalow produce a monthly newsletter to keep everyone up to date!