Features

Broken biscuits

In busy working lives it is very easy for individuals to get bogged down with the flood of urgent requests that we experience every day. At work, we have the continuous stream of electronic and face-to-face demands for this, that and the other from our managers, team leaders, colleagues and clients whereas at home we have  the never-ending administrative tasks and social interruptions of just living a 21st century life, bursting with multi-media and mobile communications.

Hafan y Mor (Haven by the Sea)

Hafan y Mor ( Haven by the Sea) is a new unit for children with disabilities in Swansea, Wales.

The families chose the theme for the centre and photos of the children enjoying an arts day on the beach cover the walls. The doors to the consulting rooms are beach huts and kites fly everywhere…

Is there time to be creative?

This is a massive question for teachers. I work all over the UK and the problem is the same, whatever the educational system and the complexion of the governing parties. Teachers and those who work with them feel under constant pressure to fulfill, what they perceive as,  expectations of them and to meet the increasingly complex needs of young people. We need be open about this and look seriously at how teachers manage their time and don’t inflict the sort of unsustainable workload that many are experiencing.

Let’s luminate

It has taken over 17 hours of train travel for me to be in Glasgow for the day today. Why did I do it? Was it worth it? 

I live in Swansea in South Wales, we have just become part of the Age Friendly Cities network and have been selected as one of four cities to have a peer review of their arts for older people provision. This involves knowledgeable people from around the country coming for the day and asking searching questions to help you improve what you are doing. 

Making tough decisions easier

While everyone wants to believe providing social care is giving service users what they need and ideally want, sometimes limited resources and other factors will mean that social workers may have to look at needing to cut people’s level of support in the name of fairness. Many disabled people fear, but not including myself, that the Independent Living Fund’s transfer to local authority control will result in a major cut of the support they will receive, including the possibility of being put into residential care.

Translating the knowledge embedded in peer stories

Peer support for clients and families of the disability sector is of paramount importance because it has the potential to hasten clients’ outcomes achievement. This is however a complex issue because of the highly specific nature of the help that each person needs.

I tackle this challenge with two ideas – peers and technology.

The idea is to orchestrate the meeting of people and knowledge via a multimedia peer-learning system accessible online and via mobile devices, thus distributing the right learning experience for the right audience, at the right time.

Are you getting your five a day?

It’s possibly the best known of all government health messages. It’s a simple and motivating message to eat healthier; it’s easily remembered and is neither patronising nor preachy; it’s entirely general and somehow deeply personal.

There’s a version for the mind, too - The New Economics Foundation’s ‘Five Ways to Wellbeing’ (Thompson, Aked, Marks and Cordon, 2008).  

Short. Sharp. And to the point.

I love full stops.
I think they're brilliant.
Here's why.
They help me convey messages.
Explain my ideas.
And make important points.
Quickly. Easily. Clearly.
They make type look good.
On a screen. And in print.
They do away with long-winded paragraphs. Wordy documents.
Boring blogs.
And stop me rambling on.
They help me write in a punchy way.
Say one thing well.
So my copy is quick to read.
And easy to digest.
See.
Look how fast you've rattled through this.
Yep.