Big Society, Disability and Civil Society Research

Website for ESRC research project 'Big Society? Disabled People with Learning Disabilities and Civil Society'

Using circles of support in transitions with young people to adulthood

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Helen Smith and Katherine Runswick-Cole were invited to an event at Bents Green School in Sheffield jointly hosted with the Department for Childhood, Education and Inclusion, Sheffield Hallam University to talk about circles of support in transitions.

About thirty parents/carers and practitioners from across Sheffield attended the session.  The session began with an introduction to circles of support by Christine Towers, formerly of the Foundation for People with Learning Disabilities.

Helen introduced her work on circles of support for Community Circles, a charity which runs as a social franchise to support the development of circles in local areas.

Katherine spoke about the Big Society strand of research focusing on circles of support and how a circle had enabled one young participant in the study to transition successfully from education to adult life.

The presentations sparked a range of conversations about how people could access support to facilitate a circle to who the circle might be for – a baby, a child, a young person or a parent?CiwRj2SWsAAQK29

The organisers are going to reflect on the findings from the day and hope to learn from a circles of support approach to develop better support for young people in Sheffield.


Author: Katherine RC

Katherine is Research Fellow in Disability Studies and Psychology at the Research Institute for Health and Social Change at Manchester Metropolitan University

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