The ideas and opinions of people we support are invaluable to us and play an essential role in shaping the future of our services.
We've come a long way since 100 Voices launched in 2011. To ensure that even more people can have their say, we've gone from holding one event a year, to hosting four local events and an overall main event. We’ve also changed the name from 100 Voices to Brandon Voices.
The events, specifically designed for and led by the people we support, gives them the opportunity to come together, share ideas and concerns, and discuss subjects that are important to people with learning disabilities and autism.
Find out more about each event
To find out about each year's event, click on the blue bars below.
In Autumn 2017, a series of events took place across Brandon, where people had the chance to get together and talk about the things that were important to them.
Early in 2018, findings from these regional events were then presented by people we support to Brandon’s board and management so they can be used to shape how we work in future.
We heard how people we support have been organising events helping people to stay safe, discussing how they can make better social connections, and talking about how Brandon can make its use of language more accessible.
There were also discussions about the challenges Brandon has faced over the past year, what this has meant for the people we support, and how we can overcome these challenges moving forwards.
Our new Involvement Coordinator, Emma Baker, is now going to be building the findings from Voices, along with our annual customer survey, into an action plan for the whole organisation that will respond directly to the aspirations of the people we support.
Over the space of two months, a series of Brandon Voices events took place to bring these thoughts and views together.
Taking over from 100 Voices, these new events were organised and led by our regional Members' Boards, made up of people with learning disabilities and autism from all areas of Brandon.
Following an event in each of their areas, all four Boards then got together to share and discuss their findings with management, support workers, and trustees.
As well as a presentation from each area's Members' Board, key policy areas were identified and everyone had a chance to vote on the issues they wanted Brandon to focus on.
Key points of discussion were; better opportunities for socialising, making sure that people with higher support needs are still heard, and more use of technologies such as Skype and email to connect with friends and family.
Gathering in Congresbury, North Somerset, over 100 people who receive support, came together to tell Brandon what's important to them and to discuss major issues in their lives.
From being able to make decisions, both those to be proud of and the right to make unwise decisions, to the importance of meaningful activities, and being supported to find love, relationships, and friendships, were the big topics on the agenda.
Key questions were considered and voted on, the results of which have been used to inform the future direction of the support we provide, and to lead the conversation at Brandon.
To ensure the number of people able to have their say continues to grow, it was decided that in 2016, additional events would be held in the different areas where Brandon works.
In our 20th anniversary year, the Voices event saw more than 300 people from across Brandon gather at London's Emirates Stadium, home of Arsenal Football Club.
Having a greater sense of freedom and personal control over their lives was one of the main theme of the day, with many people indicating this was something they were already experiencing with Brandon’s help.
However, one of the main conclusions from the event was that people with learning disabilities and autism want more support to meet new people and play an active role in the community.
The specially created programme was designed to help people with learning disabilities express their views in a friendly, supportive, and inspiring environment. All input was recorded to help inform the charity's work both in terms of service provision and in influencing government policy and support.
Over 250 people gathered at the BAWA Centre in Bristol for the third annual conference. The topic of discussion related to personal safety.
A number of guest speakers attended, each talking about a variety of subjects including mate crime, staying safe on public transport, anti-social behaviour, and bullying.
Reports and surveys
Held in Filton, Bristol, the 2012 event gave a voice to over 150 people with learning disabilities as they spoke about the problems they face in gaining employment and using public transport.
In follow up, Brandon launched a transport report at the House of Commons. The highlight of the event were passionate speeches from Joe, who we support, and Jevon, one of our travel buddies.
Subsequently, the Transport Select Committee's 'Disabled Access to Transport' report which investigates the effectiveness of legislation relating to transport for disabled people, included evidence collected from Brandon Trust.
Held in Bristol, this was the first event of its kind; a conference for and by people with learning disabilities.
Over 100 people who are supported by Brandon, presented their views on four topics that were important to them; Employment, Transport, Social lives, and Green issues.
At the end of the event, everyone voted for the topic they wanted Brandon Trust to champion. Employment topped the vote and Brandon committed to taking the topic forward as a key issue over the coming year.
As a result, we created an action plan. The 10 Employment Initiatives (pdf) outlined in this document explain what we're doing.
We also published a new Employment Strategy to encourage employment for the people we support.
For more information, please contact the Involvement team at firstname.lastname@example.org.