The Aldingbourne Trust is dedicated to helping local businesses, communities and people with learning disabilities to reach their potential and enjoy life, together.
We work to unlock potential and enable adults with learning disabilities to lead enriched and fulfilling lives through education, training, specialist care and a keen focus on building strong partnerships with local businesses and employers. We want our people to contribute to the communities they live in and fight for real opportunities so they can make their mark. You can find out more about the charity by checking out our story but we believe what we’re really about comes from the stories of the people we support.
To learn more about the Aldingbourne Trust watch this film and then listen to these interviews with the adults with learning disabilities we support, as well as staff, volunteers, trustees and members of the public:
(Courtesy of Chichester Area Talking News, 2015)
Josie: Supporting a creative spark
The Studio and her family have supported Josie to show her work in the community. Josie entered work in Pallant House’s Outside In (representing marginalised artists) competition 2009, and her work was chosen to be hung in the gallery. She entered again in 2011. Josie has her own online gallery on the Outside In website and in 2012 she was chosen as Artist of the Month. Josie’s work regularly appears on the Studio’s Facebook page, and in publications across the Trust. This year Josie was asked by Outside In to be an ambassador for the organisation.
Recently Josie requested an additional day at the Studio and now attends two days a week where she continues to create paintings, and with each one her skills and artwork improve. We hope to organise a solo exhibition for her this year. Gradually she is realising her dream!
Take a look at Josie’s ‘Outside In’ online gallery
Robert: Learning to work
This session is very popular and helps those that are in a similar situation to Robert and do not receive support with cooking at home. The students can either eat what they have cooked here at Number 73, which is a good way of socialising and getting to know the other students, or bring along plastic tubs to take portions home for another day.
Part of our My Network Plus scheme this is a very popular course and not only offers members invaluable kitchen skills but also a way of meeting new people, learning about nutrition and how to live a healthy lifestyle.
Chris: Nails his first job
We worked with Chris and his family on a development programme to enable him to build his skills and confidence and ultimately find a job where he could really contribute. He loves working with his hands so Chris firstly became an important member of our Wood Recycling Enterprise, learning about Health and Safety and how to safely operate the relevant equipment. This evolved to working with our experienced managers off-site in building sites and wood yards
Our WorkAid team worked closely with West Sussex Community Learning Disability Team to ensure Chris was both confident and capable and found a trial job for him working with Stubbs Copse Wood Yard.
The yard team have been so impressed that they not only offered Chris a permanent part-time job (which he loves) but have also invited other Aldingbourne Trust team members to come and visit which could lead to future employment opportunities too. So Chris has become an ambassador for his favourite charity too!
Throughout the whole process we also supported Chris’ family through the often confusing world of benefits and other support that they and Chris needed to make sure that working paid in the long run.
Graeme: Facing everyday challenges with a smile
Graeme has lived at Milton Lodge for 27 years and in that time has seen the building develop and change from residential care to supported living. Graeme is a life member of Bognor Football club and his family and friends all live within the local area. He attends Football matches weekly, visits with family who live nearby and enjoys a monthly supported visit to Portsmouth by train to see his dad.
In 2007 Graeme was diagnosed with early onset dementia and he and his family were keen for him to stay living at Milton Lodge for as long as he could. Graeme is being supported to manage his dementia and has moved into a specially adapted ground floor flat at Milton Lodge. Staff support Graeme to maintain his daily living skills and to remain an active part of the community. Graeme’s key-worker has made pictorial aids to maintain his skills, which included a memory book, a picture menu selector, picture shopping lists and picture sequencing to complete tasks around the house.
“The pictures make it better. I can say what each picture is of in my head and then I know to look in the cupboard. Then I do not get cross at myself for forgetting”.
Sarah: Outreach support when it matters
Outreach helped Sarah to move into another flat, supported her daily with cooking, cleaning and budgeting and now Sarah has cleared all her debts and made her new flat a warm and welcoming home.
Sarah has learnt to trust staff and talk her issues through and encourages others to do the same. With the Aldingbourne Trust’s support Sarah is now able to work on reception at our drop-in and activities centre, no. 73 and she also finds time to volunteer at her local Scope shop. Perhaps most impressive is the work Sarah does as one of our Powerful Trainer team, visiting local businesses and employers and presenting to teams of all sizes on how to work with learning disabled adults and what a positive difference they can make to every organisation.
Katherine: Finds independence at Sudley Road
Katherine enjoys the independence and privacy that living in a Sudley Road flat provides but also loves spending time with other residents during the organised craft sessions three afternoons every week. In fact she’s one of the best sewers we have! She also learns cooking, personal care and budgeting to help improve that all-important sense of independence.
Katherine also likes going out for day trips and holidays with other tenants which are all supervised and enjoyed by our expert carers.