Lambeth council’s Without Walls project which supports adults with learning difficulties in their own community, has won best Innovation in Social Care at the MJ awards.
The approach focuses on physical activity and delivers personalised and individual support rather than standard, establish day-services or residential care.
Cllr Jackie Meldrum, Lambeth cabinet member for Adult Social Care, said: “I’m delighted that our team have been recognised for their excellence and innovation.
“The Without Walls project not only provides a much better service for users, but it does so at less cost; reducing the need for expensive and often detrimental residential care away from a person’s home community and instead putting them in control.
“I hope other councils will take on a similar approach to adult social care – it really does work, as we’ve proved here in Lambeth.”
Working with psychologists, the Without Walls service identified that structured physical activities are consistently beneficial for adults with complex care needs.
Things like walking, running, gardening, swimming, dancing are all offered in local parks, leisure centres and adventure-play grounds.
The project is about giving service users freedom and removing boundaries which often restrict what they want to do and are capable of.
The MJ Awards are held every year to recognise good work in local governments. As well as winning the Innovation in Social Care award, Lambeth council was also shortlisted and commended in the Legal Services category.