Lynsey joined Affinity Trust in 2016. Just over a year later, she was shortlisted for the Support Worker Award in the National Learning Disability and Autism Awards.
Why did you join Affinity Trust?
I’d been working for another support provider for 11 years, and wanted a change.
What does your work here involve?
I’m a support worker, responsible for five people at our service in Methley, near Leeds.
It’s a supported living service, where people live in their own homes, but need round-the-clock support, including personal care. I work in shifts, including some overnight sleep-ins. I also work now and then at some of our other services in Yorkshire.
What do you enjoy most about your job?
I enjoy spending time with the people we support, trying out new activities with them, and making sure we never give up on them.
“Because of Lynsey, Thomas has been supported to live as independently as possible, given choices with his holidays, and to go swimming, which he loves” – Angela, Lynsey’s team leader
How have you supported people?
I helped one man I support to use a swimming pool. He has autism and non-verbal communication. We looked at different pools, and discussed his needs with the lifeguards, until we found the right one, which had shallow water, was the right temperature and had easy access. It’s a sensory experience for him. At first he would only dip his toe in the water, but now he stays there for 40 minutes at a time, and has the biggest smile on his face!
I’ve also put together scrapbooks for the people we support so they can show what they need, like and dislike. We regularly add pictures, so people can look back at their achievements and what they’ve enjoyed that month.
How has your job changed since joining Affinity Trust?
I started here as a senior support worker, but asked to become a support worker so I could spend more time working with the people we support.
How did you feel about being shortlisted for the Learning Disability and Autism Awards?
I was surprised to be shortlisted as I was really just doing my job. But it was nice to be recognised for what I do. Also terrifying – I don’t enjoy being in a room with lots of strangers – so in a way I was relieved not to have won on the night!
“If anyone represents our values, it’s Lynsey. She is extremely reliable, flexible and committed. She will always be there for the people we support, even if it means moving her days off to take them on trips they want to do” – one of Lynsey’s colleagues