Glen Randall – Driving Forward Autism Innovation
19 Jul 2016
Here is Glen Randall, who began her new role as Precious Homes’ Autism London Residential Director of Operations on July 1st, speaks to us direct about her new position and how she will be helping drive forward Precious Homes’ Innovative Autism Residential Model across London.
Previously Senior Registered Manager at Prince Regent, Glen’s new role will see her overseeing 6 existing Autism-Specific Residential services, as well as driving forward new provision in response to demand.
Glen explains: “Many of the individuals living at our Autism Residential services have moved from secure settings in response to the transforming care agenda. Precious Homes recognised a need for autism-specific community provision that could not only respond to the demand for community placements – but would greatly increase the experiences, opportunities and lives of Individuals.”
The Precious Homes’ Autism and Complex Needs model is a residential setting comprising of flats within the scheme – with clear separation of support alongside tailored communal areas.
Glen explains: “The set-up of the services, allows each individual personalised space that can be designed and adapted to meet their specific needs. This is vital for people with Autism and complex needs, enabling us to respond to sensory needs and providing space to de-escalate.”
The service design which Precious Homes has developed over the past two years includes a clear separation of support hours and no shared support except from during night time – a unique model for the sector that works perfectly for this client group.
“So if a person is commissioned with 2:1 support – they receive that exact amount. Unlike many other providers, we do not share any support hours during the day which is what makes the model so successful for this complex client group.”
Glen’s expertise and background is in Autism and behaviour which may be described as challenging. Having worked in care for over 34 years, Glen began her career as a Support Worker within learning disability and older people provisions.
“My first job working with people with Autism was in 1999 – and a real eye opener. I initially thought it wasn’t for me, but my Manager at the time told me to stick with it – I’m glad I did!”
The skills and approaches which Glen brought to her first Autism role focused on the individual and was not Autism-specific. Although ASD theory, knowledge and approaches are vital, the key message Glen has carried throughout her career, and which she passes on to her teams now, is to focus on the person.
“The key is to treat individuals as people first, not focusing on their diagnosis of Autism. Services are too quick to label and although we need to highlight our ‘Autism’ expertise, actual support needs to focus on people, not labels.”
Glen brings her expertise and knowledge to her own teams – mentoring and providing hands on training to drive forward best practice.
“We train our support teams to step into each individual’s ‘world’ so that they can find out the specific way in which they function, enabling us to plan individualised support in response. This involves working together as a team to find solutions and be innovative in our approaches.”
Moving from Senior Registered Manager to a Director role, Glen will remain hands on and wants to drive forward best practice across her new teams.
“I love support, and although my role is changing, I will be out and about in my services and heavily involved in assessments and placements to ensure that the work we do is of the highest quality and continues to transform lives.”
Greg Lapham, Chief Operating Officers says: “Glen’s knowledge and experience with Autism is second to none and we will be utilising her expertise to head up the Operations teams that focus on providing specialist Autism services across London. As we grow and develop each of our regions, the plan is to complement and enhance the skills of each of our fantastic Directors – meeting demand and driving forward quality Nationally.”
As a real role model to the Precious Home Teams we wish Glen every success in her new role!