*I approached the Senior Manager at Nclude to conduct this interview. I received no payment or any other compensation for this post.

History of Nclude

Nclude are an organisation situated in Buckinghamshire, who provide training and support to people with learning disabilities. Nclude are part of Talkbackwho help individuals gain confidence, build self-esteem and have their own voice.

nclude, talkback
Adults who attend Nclude. Copyright (c) Image provided by Talkback Nclude

Talkback started 20 years ago initially providing advocacy service to people with a learning disability. This extended to providing day services to adults with a learning disability when Buckinghamshire closed many of their day services. This is where Nclude as a service provider started.

Neil Sainsbury, who is a Senior Manager explains that staff at Nclude are “passionate about their work” and several employees have personal experience, which gives them a “valuable insight” to their job. Furthermore, Jeremy Hay (CEO) expresses the importance for Nclude to help individuals: “strive for independence regardless of the labels others place on them.”

Nclude currently has 4 programmes:

  • Equip: offering education support at college and work placements. Help to gain employment opportunities in retail and work experience on a farm. The Equip programme offers support on driving theory and car maintenance.
  • Nclude Me: offering day opportunities such as drama sessions, creative art groups, and media projects, allotment projects and men’s and women’s groups.
  • Independence Unlimited: offering skills for life in healthy living, travel training, employability, cooking skills, shopping, how to open a bank account, how to shave, sports activities and day-to-day support.
  • Supported Employment: supporting people to find and maintain work.

Neil Sainsbury (Senior Manager) kindly took some time out to answer my questions:

The Interview

Whereabouts in Buckinghamshire do Nclude offer their services?

We provide support in Aylesbury and High Wycombe. We also run an evening club in Milton Keynes called Neway every Wednesday.

How can you access this service?

You can access our Nclude Me and Independence Unlimited programmes with a direct payment/funding from your local authority or through self-funding. Referrals can be made directly to us, and we offer face to face meetings and tours as well as free tasters, ensuring that someone joins the right group. These services are open to anyone over 18. Our Equip programme is accessed via education funding, and referrals come via the local education authority.

Are there any future plans for Nclude Me?

We host two extremely popular drama shows a year, a summer show and a winter panto and are planning on extending this to include an evening show. This way we can also invite more friends and family members. The adults, who attend Nclude Me are involved in all aspects of producing the drama show. It takes months of preparation, scene setting, developing the characters and constructing ideas for the script. We are also developing the range of sporting opportunities that we offer our members. We feel that it is extremely important for our members to have access to activity that can help improve their overall wellbeing.

As part of Independence Unlimited, you offer sporting activities. How do you manage to provide a range of sporting services when it can be hard to access this due to training issues and suitability?

We provide a range of inclusive sports sessions that not only focus on how to keep physically active but also look at keeping yourself healthy both through a balanced diet, a good sleeping pattern, attending regular health appointments and maintaining healthy relationships. Particularly when young people are transitioning out of college, an active lifestyle can be difficult to manage and maintain, so we help them learn about what having a healthy lifestyle means and how to manage that. We work with organisations such as LEAP and have developed our own team of trained sports coaches. We are also working with Stoke Mandeville Stadium to offer new opportunities to our members.

What does your job entail and what is the best part of your job?

I oversee the development of our Nclude Me and Independence Unlimited programmes. The best part of my job is seeing our members develop and achieve new skills. Knowing that you and your colleagues have been a part of enabling those achievements is a motivating factor for us to do what we do.

Nclude offer a lot of practical skills that are relatable to real life experiences, enabling individuals to make choices and have more control over their decisions. I’d like to thank Neil for giving me a better insight on Nclude and the work they do. It is good to know that there are services like this available.

To learn more about Nclude, follow the link:

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