An NHS trust that provides learning disability services across Rotherham, Doncaster and North Lincolnshire has developed a training package for services users to help them recognise and report different types of abuse.

Rotherham Doncaster and South Humber NHS Foundation Trust (RDaSH) has developed training sessions for service users living in its supported living services and community homes. The four-hour training sessions, which run over two consecutive weeks, are facilitated by practice development lead Valerie Barclay, assistant psychologist Nici Grace and a group of third-year student nurses on placement with RDaSH.

They focus on various types of abuse, including: physical, psychological, sexual, financial, neglect, discrimination and social. Service users learn how to protect themselves and others from becoming victims of abuse and are given guidance about who to tell.

“The benefit for service users is obvious,” said Barclay. “By talking openly about abuse and developing their knowledge and skills in this area, they are better equipped to deal with any potential issues during their daily lives. “There is also evidence to suggest that staff who have a positive regard for the people they work with will provide a higher level of empathy and support. Our staff training sessions explore the personal values and attitudes of staff and how this affects their work. “By recognising each service user as an individual, we can ensure that the services we provide are person-centred and offer the highest level of protection for the people in our care.”