The Kent Autistic Trust has been providing support for autistic individuals and their families, and those with other associated difficulties since 1989. We provide services for over 5,000 people in Kent each year. We do this in a variety of settings including; a free Family Support Service, registered homes, specialist supported living services, community based vocational day centres, training and support groups.
Our residential and supported living services offer 24-hour support to autistic people. Our specialist supported living service has grown and evolved through the years and typically supports people that mainstream providers have refused to support or where a placement has broken down. We support people who would have otherwise been referred to a challenging behaviour service or a more restrictive setting. The range of adults across the organisation is highly diverse, requiring a very open-minded approach using creativity.
Our day centres are accessible to resident and non-resident supported adults in the community, who are also able to attend from 9am until 4pm; this provides supported structure and focus to their week as well as challenging them to try new things and offering the opportunity to take part in social activities. Our day centres offer a variety of activities and support including art projects, sensory, trips out, work type activities, exercise, education and life skill opportunities, in an autism friendly environment supported by expert staff and a behavioural support team.
Our Family Support service is a free service providing information, advice, support and training to individuals, families/carers and professionals and our support groups are for families of children and adults or autistic individuals to develop a community network to help each other through difficult times; build friendships and have the opportunity to discuss the individual challenges they face, with people who understand and share the same difficulties.
The Care Quality Commission has rated several of our services 'OUTSTANDING' with the remaining services 'GOOD', this means that our passion and drive to continuously strive to excel has been recognized formally and will hopefully give confidence to future funders that we are transparent about what we deliver and the resulting outcomes for the people we serve. Our overall aim is to ensure that autistic people have the best quality of life and receive the right balance of support, to be as successful and as content as possible in all areas of their life. The scope, direction and expansion of the Trust's activities, is and will continue to be driven by the needs of the people we support.
Our ethos is grounded in a focus on those we serve and on ensuring that people have fulfilling lives, this turns out to be a powerful lever for retaining staff. People want to work in a setting where they can make a difference and where they know that senior management and the board, truly care about the work they do and the people they support. This invisible, but tangible golden thread runs throughout our organisation and is what pulls us together, blessing us with an amazing and committed workforce.
Our Family Support service is the only provision in Kent that provides so many different streams of support through one free service, which in itself, shows how much of an impact we have in our community, providing both support, advice and a helping hand to families and individuals with nowhere else to turn. Without us over 5,000 people each year would be driven towards the NHS and other services, who don't have the staffing capacity or budget to provide support to so many thousands of people in Kent, therefore many would get lost in the system.
The Kent Autistic Trust....a better life, a better future!