Hannah has Global Developmental Delay and selective mutism and lives at home with her family. After leaving further education, Hannah and her family decided that Oakwood day services would be an ideal place for Hannah to get involved in group activities and she has been accessing our services for several years now.
When she first came to Oakwood, Hannah was extremely shy, would not speak, hold eye contact with anybody or join in with group activities, although she seemed to enjoy the horticultural environment.
Oakwood, as a service, focuses on tackling social isolation and encouraging interaction between individuals to improve confidence and wellbeing. Over the following weeks and months, slowly but surely, Hannah started to increase her participation in group activities, interacting with her peers and even progressing to saying small sentences to people. With patience and time, Hannah has continued to come on leaps and bounds and now accesses a range of activities at Oakwood. She clearly takes great pleasure from being in a position to help within the group and uses her social skills and new found confidence to assist other people with a range of tasks.
Hannah’s mother says: “As a parent, the relief you feel when you know you have found the right place, where your child is happy and safe, can make friends and choose their own activities, is fantastic and Oakwood delivers all this and more!”
Without the opportunity and supportive environment of Oakwood’s activity program, Hannah, like many others, would be socially isolated – a factor which could lead to a
decline in mental and physical wellbeing.