Preparation for Adulthood (PFA) is for people from 14 years old who have complex needs and disabilities. It supports them on their transition from children's to adult services.
Introduction to PFA
PFA supports young people and young adults to have a fulfilling transition from childhood to adulthood.
PFA combines models of social care practice across children’s and adults services. This follows the principles of strength-based practice in both children’s and adults current methodology. These include Restorative Practice, Three Conversations and Family Group Conferencing.
The Dudley Preparing for Adulthood Strategy and Action Plan 2020-25 launched in July 2021. The focus for PFA in Dudley is on the young people and adults with SEND who would potentially be transitioning into Dudley Disability Service.
Areas of Focus
SEND vision for Dudley
Dudley is an inclusive borough where children, young people and adults with SEND thrive, are empowered to realise their aspirations and achieve their full potential through quality support and provision where everyone aims for excellence.
Making a positive contribution to their communities
- To ensure communication is effective an in appropriate formats. Communication passports to be in place
- To work in co-production and fully enable the voice of experience to shape/develop future provision and services for people with SEND
- To be supported to have friends, relationships, participation and inclusion in local communities. Enabled to lead ordinary lives
- To hear the voice of young people/adults, their parents/carers and challenge poor practices across education, health and social care
Priorities and maximise independence
- Develop peer/budding and mentoring approaches, including lifestyle coaches
- Person centred approach to support
- To develop and create opportunities for young people/adults to live more independently within local communities
- To have access to enablement that maximises skill and abilities. To promote and maximise independence, including access to travel and training
- To ensure that young people/adults have access to mainstream health provision with reasonable adjustments in place to support this
- To ensure that there are opportunities to develop self esteem and confidence. To build resilience to promote and maximise independence
- To offer advice, information and guidance in appropriate and accessible formats, including via the Dudley website and the local offer
- All individuals with complex health needs have a clear health action plan/passport
Enabled, empowered and being supported to take part in learning, training and employment opportunities
- To develop the post 16 education offer. To increase the number of apprenticeships, internships and volunteering opportunities
- To increase the choice and opportunities for young people/adults who wish to go on to further education
- To increase access to employment and build disability confident employers
Four pillars of PFA
- Opportunities to access further education and employment
- Independent living, including access to supported living
- Full inclusion and active participation in local communities as an equal citizen and to be supported to build relationships and friendships
- To maintain health and wellbeing with reasonable adjustments in place as appropriate to support the access to mainstream health provision and services
- Support young people entering adulthood to be physically and mentally resilient so once they become an adult, they will have a connective, fulfilling and productive life
- Build lifelong support networks
- Increase the number of supportive and lasting relationships
- Reduce the number of residential placements
- Improve the emotional and mental wellbeing of our young people
- Improve access to employment opportunities
- Improve the support offer of re-accommodation
What is PFA?
Preparing for Adulthood is the umbrella term for joint working by Social Services, Health and Education to ensure that young people and young adults, aged 14-25, including those with additional needs, can achieve outcomes in:
The aim is to ensure that young people are involved very early on in their PFA journey in discussions and decision making on their health needs and plans. Make sure that the young people and families have clarity on health pathways, treatments, expected health outcomes, who is responsible for funding equipment, treatments, and assessments and how to access them.
Employment and education
The aim is to help young people enter employment and to gain greater choice, control, confidence, financial independence, stability, and role in the community. Increasing mental health and wellbeing and access to wider social networks. Make sure that the three years post 16 and one year post 19 education offer provides the young people with the access to full range of accredited and valued qualifications. Make the best use of the PFA pathways for young people with complex needs across all partners to enhance their life and lifestyle.
The aim is to make sure that young people with SEND can access increased range of options for housing, greater choice with enhanced skills through an accommodation pathway. Engage with young people earlier to better understand the wishes of the individuals enabling a greater control over which environment they want to live in.
The aim is to empower young people with SEND to have greater control over the relationships they want to maintain, develop, and progress. Greater opportunities to meet and engage with other children and young people in a wider variety of settings to which access will be enhanced, such as colleges, leisure centres, clubs, etc.
Who is PFA for?
The Dudley Disability Services PFA team will support young people who:
- Are aged between 14-25 who have SEN and a physical disability, a learning disability and/or autism
- Want support with one of our 4 PFA outcomes as mentioned above