"I think it’s important that everyone has the opportunity to be creative"

Supported Living Services Client

The support workers here understand why it’s important to me to create these plays.

I think it’s important that everyone has the opportunity to be creative.

I like to spend my time organising my plays. If I didn’t do them, I would get bored. It’s exciting and it lets me use my imagination. I like coming up with ideas and making them real.

I live in a supported living home and I’ve been here for ten years. It’s a place where people who need care and support live.

I love it here. Everybody’s so nice and polite and friendly.

I like that I’ve got my own private place. I feel independent.

I have my own flat and support workers come in to help me. They support me with making meals, drive me to the gym and to a social club called Out There.

My plays are about the Australian soap Neighbours! I love the whole programme – there’s so much going on – people robbing people, Karl Kennedy’s there… My favourite characters are Dr Karl and Dr Darcy!

I change the seasons from hot Australian summers to cold winters. Only recently I’ve added Christmas and Santa Claus to my plays. All the time there are songs playing. My plays are quite dramatic!

When you’re a director it’s not an easy world cos you’ve got to do it the sensible way, not the easiest way.

My actors live in the local area – they’re my friends and they all like acting. I give them their scripts and letters telling them where the play will be and when they will be collected to go to the venue.

I did a rehearsal last year but not all the actors turned up, so it’s best to meet when we perform the play. Trying to get everyone to commit to the play is the hardest part as a director. That’s when I get stressed.

I love everyone being there on the day, and the curtains! I love the whole atmosphere of it all.

I put on a buffet lunch for the guests and there’s a little teashop which makes a cake just for the cast. I pay for everything myself apart from the props I’ve already got.

The most exciting part is receiving the DVD recording of the play. All my cast get a copy.

Most people involved in the plays have a learning disability.

Some actors have problems with memorising their lines, so I let them bring the scripts on the stage.

The audience likes it! People from my supported living service and friends of mine come to see it. I feel proud once it’s all done and dusted but it can be a real worry that I don’t get an audience to come.

I do it all in memory of Grandma because she always used to come to my plays. She loved coming to support me and everyone else. I dedicate my plays to her.

Two of the staff here dress up as elves when I put on my plays! And my service manager helps me when I’m buying things for the play because I have difficulty managing lots of money.

The support workers here understand why it’s important to me to create these plays - that feels nice and pleasant.

 

Southdown manages supported living services across Sussex. Supported living is where an individual owns or rents their own home and has control over the support they get and how they live their lives. Accommodation and support is provided separately. It can be very different for different people. For one person, supported living might be a few hours of support a week to enable them to live independently by themselves in a rented flat. For another it may be around the clock support in a shared house or self-contained flat.