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Council-run home for children with disabilities praised for giving every child a voice

Following an inspection by Government watchdog Ofsted, staff at a children’s home run by Milton Keynes Council have been recognised for their creativity and positive relationships with children.

Westminster House in Bletchley provides long-stay residential care and support 365 days a year for children who have learning difficulties and may also have physical disabilities. The 19-strong team care for up to five children at any time.

The children have a wide range of activities available to them each day including regular day trips, arts and crafts, music lessons, cooking and visits to the park.

Inspectors visited the home in March and spoke with staff, children and their families, social workers and local school staff about their experiences.

In its subsequent report, Ofsted rated the children’s home as ‘good’ and stated that children feel happy and safe in the home whilst being supported to develop their independence. One parent said that her child always looks forward to coming back to the home.

Staff at Westminster House were also commended for maintaining close links with parents and professionals and for their ability to communicate with non-verbal children, ensuring that every child’s voice is heard.

Nicola Davis, Manager of Westminster House, said: “I’m so proud of the dedicated team we have to support our children. The resilience and commitment they have shown to the children and each other is second to none. They’ve worked tirelessly during a very difficult time and throughout the Covid pandemic, to ensure these children receive the very best care.”

Councillor Zoe Nolan, Cabinet Member for Children and Families said: “For those who work at Westminster House, it is clearly more than just a job. We’ve heard from parents, professionals and even taxi drivers that have seen the positive impact of this team on the children in their care. I’m pleased that Ofsted recognises Westminster House and a team who do everything possible to build the confidence of our most vulnerable young people.”

Westminster House was purpose built in May 2013 and won a Building Excellence Award in 2014 due to its innovative design.


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