Image demonstrating Learning Disability Nursing centenary rocks

Learning Disability Nursing centenary rocks

To celebrate the 100th birthday of learning disability nursing this year, 100 decorative rocks are being placed in mystery locations around Northumberland.

Each rock will have a picture painted by a person with a learning disability on the top and the RNLD 100 logo on the bottom.

The colourful rocks are being decorated in sessions hosted by ‘Josephine and Jack’ - life size, three dimensional anatomical cloth people used as an interactive learning resource for people who have a learning disability or are on the autistic spectrum.

The sessions form part of a year of celebrations hosted by Learning Disability nurses from Northumbria Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust.

Josephine and Jack training coordinator Kerry Jackson said: “During October and November Josephine and Jack visited each of Northumberland County Council’s day centres where we invited service users to decorate rocks and then put them in places of their choice.

“We hope that when people find the rocks it will help to raise awareness of the support available from learning disability nurses.”

The learning disability community nursing service in Northumberland operates under a partnership arrangement between Northumbria Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust and Northumberland County Council, to provide an integrated service to adults with a learning disability who live in Northumberland. The service is made up of registered learning disability nurses and support workers.

Northumberland County Council Executive Director of Adult Social Care and Children's Services, Cath McEvoy-Carr said: “Learning disability nurses provide valuable support for people with a learning disability and complex health needs including support with communication, medication, problems eating and swallowing, access to healthcare and making healthy lifestyle choices, everyday life skills and being more independent.

“The centenary rocks are a light-hearted and imaginative way to celebrate the centenary and recognise the contribution learning disability nursing makes to people’s lives.”

The Jack and Josephine project is an innovative approach to supporting people with learning disabilities to understand their bodies, their rights and choices and how to keep themselves physically and emotionally well.

Jack and Josephine are used across Northumberland to offer people participative and creative forums to help them express their feelings about difficult subjects such as bereavement, and to discuss a range of health- related issues like checking for changes, ageing, and personal hygiene, as well as general discussion on a range of topics including keeping safe in the community, hate crime and safeguarding.
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