The Quiver March 2022 Poetical Challenge

Care in the Community

They called it Care in the Community,In the nineties it was rife;We all jumped on the bandwagonPromising patients a better life.There were gurus that we followed,And Government passed a law,New careers opened up before usAs institutions closed their doors.Soon, new jobs were createdAs life for patients was rearranged,Though none had been consulted,Their circumstances changed.They lost their home of many yearsAnd everything they knew,Under the banner of ‘improved’And so the movement grew.We followed a new set of rules,Normalisation, it was keyAs Wolfensburger specified,The patients were just like you and me.Goffman’s plan moved into action,Institutions closed their doorsAnd 24 learning disabled adultsRelied on me to fight their cause.A group of likeminded peopleCame together in 4 teamsAnd by following Tizard’s exampleThe residents realised some dreams.Normal living was our aimNo medical model planned.And residents began to flourishTheir smiling faces, all on hand.The moral of this storyIs embedded in the careRespect for one anotherAnd the ability to share.The road, it wasn’t easy,Some days were hard to bear,But the ethos and our practiceDemonstrated real care.Care in the CommunityChallenged outmoded thoughtAnd when rolled out in practiceEmphasised the need for some support.When treated with respectAnd aided to believeFolk with learning disabilitiesCan with certainty, achieve.

Jennifer Yates

Jennifer lives in Crowborough, East Sussex, UK. She is an Open University Masters graduate and a former NHS manager working ...more