Service user engagement

Exemplar Health Care’s mission is to make every day better for the people we support, and we do this by putting them at the heart of everything that we do.

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Male service user reading a document with Manager

Life with Exemplar Health Care is all about choice – we encourage and empower people to decide how they want to live, and involve them in decisions that impact the running of the home and the wider company.

We know that our care services are more likely to be effective if they’re developed and delivered with the direct involvement of people who use them.

We’re committed to engaging with our service users in a variety of meaningful ways, to ensure that each individual is central to decisions about their care and that our care is shaped and guided by the people that receive it.

Making life meaningful in our care homes

We put meaningful engagement and activity at the centre of daily life in our homes.

Everyone should have the opportunity to engage in activities that have a purpose and are meaningful to them. This can help to sustain both physical and mental health – including overcoming loneliness, improving wellbeing and boosting self-esteem.

We take the time to understand people’s unique life experiences, roles and routines, interests, hobbies and likes – and use this knowledge to empower and enable people to engage in a range of activities that are important and enjoyable for them.

Hear from Service User Ambassador, Michelle

Service User Council

Each of our care homes has a Service User Ambassador who acts on behalf of the residents in the home on the Service User Council.

The Service User Council is made up of ambassadors from each Exemplar Health Care home and members of our Leadership Team. The council meets every month and gets involved in important decisions and projects across the company. 

The Council has been involved in important changes such as developing our service user holiday policy and organising company-wide competitions such as our Exemplar Elite Games and Exemplar’s Got Talent.

Hello, I’m Sue and I’ve been living at Eastlands for 11 years now. I’m the Service User Ambassador for the home.

As the Service User Ambassador I want to help others. I do a lot of work with Mercy, our Home Manager - she listens to me and we have a good relationship.

I have been involved with many things in the home especially the activities and greeting people when they visit the home.

The home understands that it’s important to include us as we can say what we think. And they do listen.

Read Sue’s story

Sue lives at Eastlands
Sarah lives at Ribble View

Hello, I’m Sarah and I have been living at Ribble View since September 2020 and have settled into life here brilliantly.

I wanted to become a Service User Ambassador as this role gives me a purpose. I help plan our four weekly activity plans and I have done some interviewing for new colleagues. 

Helping me to plan things gives my life meaning and the staff come to me to show people around. I have also made friends with another service user and I am a befriender and peer buddy. I love doing these things as it makes me feel good and I understand how they feel having been in the same position myself.

Read Sarah’s story

Other roles in our homes

For many of us, getting involved in groups or going to work/volunteering, gives us a sense of purpose and pride.

If service users wish, they can take part in roles within their home, so that they get the opportunity to learn new skills and take part in activities that give their life meaning and purpose.

The roles include being a tour guide for visitors, support recruitment including interviews, inducting new colleagues, chairing service user meetings, delivering newspapers and post, keeping the gardens and planning social activities and events.

Service users choosing furniture

Marie and Carol at Ravensdale in Leeds enjoyed choosing the furniture and colour scheme when the home was refurbished in 2021.

Chris at Thames House

Chris at Thames House in Rochdale gets involved in interviews with new colleagues, and speaks on their company induction about the role and the home.

Service user guide for new residents

People told us that they often feel worried about moving into a care home. So our Service User Ambassadors have created a service user guide for each home that they give to people before they move in.

The guides, also available in easy read and other languages, give a friendly introduction to the home and share useful information such as meal times and local amenities.

Download an example service user guide.

Our Service User Ambassadors act as a buddy to new residents for the first few weeks, if they wish. This supports people to feel welcome and settle into their new home. 

Ways to feed back

It’s important that service users and their family and friends have the opportunity to feedback about their care and the home, and that we use this feedback to inform and continually improve our care.

Annual service user survey

We send out an annual service user and relative survey to understand people’s experiences of living in their home.

The results are collated by an independent team, and each home develops an action plan which outlines what actions the home will take in response to the survey findings, and provide regular updates on the plan.

 

You said, we did

Our homes hold regular meetings and forums for service users, family and friends to share their experiences, get emotional support and discuss what’s working well and what could be improved.

The outcomes of these meetings and forums are displayed on the ‘You said, we did’ board in each of our homes so everyone can see the changes that we’ve made to improve people’s lives.