Posted by Alice Irvine on the 14 Jun 2017

In September 2016 Orchard Hill College opened a new Centre in Hillingdon, and one parent has been in touch to let us know the incredible journey her daughter has been on since joining the College:

“My daughter left school and there was nowhere for her to go that was local and appropriate to her needs. She spent a year at home, losing her routine. When the new Orchard Hill College site opened it gave me and my daughter a new lease of life. In the May before she started college, a member of the curriculum team and I planned a long transition period.”

Prior to starting at College, Evan was somewhat isolated and found it difficult to cope with change, feeling uncomfortable going out in the community with anyone other than her mother. The College set up a series of small steps to support Evan to gradually transition in to the new environment. Initially apprehensive to enter the classroom, she began to join short, structured sessions with peers, and as the months went by, she began to go on trips in to the local community with her peers.

Needless to say, staff and Evan's family are so proud of what she has achieved.

Evan's mother said “she has blown us away. Targets we planned were done within weeks, not months as we thought. Evan has shown such fantastic progress building links with her community and making a plan for the future to ensure that when she finishes her course she will have her own life full of activities she needs and enjoys.”

Evan's family has seen a huge change in her and has accredited it to “every one of her special traits being catered for.” All of her support network has seen how the College has enabled her to create a life for herself, and nobody is more proud than her mum: “Evan goes line dancing every week, she has her nails painted, she shops on the high street, takes public transport, the list is endless. I nearly faint when I read her daily report. I can't believe this is my daughter! This College is second to none; exceptional and life changing. The team is amazing, caring, sensitive and has encouraged my daughter into activities I never imagined she would do or achieve.”