NHS Long Term Plan

Summary of the NHS Long-Term Plan and what it means for vulnerable children and young people: 
“We read the NHS Long-Term Plan keenly and, after browsing the 100-odd pages, felt enthusiastic about the NHS’s vision for supporting the most vulnerable children and young people. Overall, the notion of staff “working differently” resonates well with us and the shift from crisis-support to a more preventative, community-based approach aligns well with the ethos we have long advocated.
We share the aim to enable children and young people with learning disabilities and autism to live “happier, healthier, longer lives” and we agree that this can only be achieved by offering a more child-centred provision. However, we acknowledge that NHS staff often lack the confidence and skills to communicate with and support their most vulnerable patients and so we welcome the vision that NHS staff will be empowered with specialist training.
We are also excited that the Plan has acknowledged the vital role that local groups and social enterprises play in “filling the gap in support” and welcome the opportunity to use innovative approaches to tackle the tragic physical and mental health inequalities experienced by this population.
As we all do, we hope that the new NHS Long-Term Plan enables the NHS to provide the best possible support to children, young people and their families when they need it most”.

Communicate 2U is a not-for-profit organisation, aiming to reduce the tragic inequalities suffered by people with a learning disability, autism or other condition. We use an innovative approach; using creative media – such as drama, music and art – to enable our most vulnerable people to become experts in their own communication styles and support needs. For the past 7 years, we have supported our “Communication Experts” to teach thousands of staff across health and social care, education and business how to communicate and support their most vulnerable service users.
Contact us to find out more about our services, to find out how you can support us or to discuss how we could work with your organisation.

Selly Manor Museum

Communicate 2 U have been lucky enough to work on an exciting project with Selly Manor Museum based in Bournville, Birmingham.

Communicate 2 U students from Selly Oak Trust School have been working alongside the museum’s Learning and Access Officer Nicki Lupton to make the site more accessible for people with learning disabilities.

Here’s what we have been up to:

“Selly manor is a museum in Bournville in Birmingham. Communicate 2u Have been working with Selly Manor to make the museum easier to get around for people with Autism and Learning Difficulties.

We started to do a communication Audit checking the information books and pictures and signs.

We have made a film for Autism Awareness week about what to expect when you visit Selly Manor.

On Tuesday the 27th of March Year 14 ran our tour at Selly Manor. Students from Selly Oak Trust School came to Selly Manor to do the tour, the games and the treasure hunt we had made for them. They found out the history of the Selly Manor to win some the most stunning Cadbury’s chocolate.

By Cameron & Laurel (Year 14 C2U)

The project has proved a great success for all involved and has been a wonderful experience for staff and students.

Check out our video about Selly Manor Museum telling visitors what to expect when you visit:

A Guide to Selly Manor Museum from Sarah Watton on Vimeo.


Our work at Coventry University

Year 14 at Coventry University

Since September, Communicate2U has been regularly teaching at Coventry University. We have taught occupational therapist students (through dramas and songs) how to communicate better with people who may struggle with communication.

Communicate2U is also running a communication cafe at the University where we get people to play games, do dramas and communicate using signs and body language. The cafe runs every Wednesday in the sensory room.

We have also marked and graded student’s posters by how well we understand them, as part of their assessment.

By Josh and Cameron (Year 14 Communication Experts)

A Royal Visit for our C2U students

Students at Selly Oak Trust School working with Communicate 2U had a right royal treat this year, when they were invited to meet Prince William and Kate. The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge were in Coventry on 16th January to open the new £59 million Health and Life Sciences building at the University.

Students at Selly Oak Trust School Sixth Form have the option of doing work experience with Communicate 2U. Communicate 2U is a company that teachers professionals – like doctors, nurses and social workers – how to communicate better. Communicate 2U teaches using ways that our students feel comfortable, like drama, song and small group work.

Students working with Communicate 2U have been working with Coventry University this year. The team have been teaching in front of audiences of up to 200 University students and it has been lovely to see the students grow so much in confidence! The University students love it too, saying it is “fun” and “will change the way I communicate with people with different communication styles in the future.”

This year, the University has opened a new building to teach its nurses and midwives. The building was opened by Prince William and Kate – or the ‘Duke and Duchess of Cambridge’ as they are called. Students with Communicate 2U were invited to meet William and Kate, to celebrate all of the hard work they have done at the University. William and Kate even joined in with one of the songs written by our students – ‘Learn from Us’ or ‘the Wiggle Dance’ – and this was shown on the news and in newspapers across the country!

Click here for the video

The students talked to William and Kate about their work with Communicate 2U and even had the chance to ask questions about the royal children, George and Charlotte. Our students said it was a “happy” and “emotional” opportunity and they felt “powerful and lucky to meet them.”

We also managed to get into some of the newspapers, including The Evening Standard  and The Daily Mail. Follow the links to view the articles.

This was the beginning of an exciting year for students with Communicate 2U. Later this year, the team will be celebrating Autism Awareness Week with events at Selly Manor Museum and teaching staff at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital about communication. Well done team!