Being Understood – Positive Behaviour Support

Positive behaviour support

Home From Home Care uses Positive Behaviour Support (PBS) techniques to exceed expectations of care. Our dedicated team work proactively across all of the homes – working directly with an individual’s staff team and in partnership with our consultant clinical psychologist to support understanding of behaviour in context.

The next article in this series gives an insight into how we use PBS to ensure the individuals in our care are able to understand others and make themselves understood.


In situations when we are not understood, it can easily become frustrating. Many individuals with learning disabilities have communication difficulties both in expressing their wants and needs and with understanding others. Improving communication can greatly reduce or stop incidences of challenging behaviour, enabling individuals’ wider life opportunities.


Communication is used to control our environment and influence other people. “Challenging behaviour is an act of miscommunication” says Ashley Sawyer, one of our PBS Partners “Individuals with learning disabilities will communicate their needs in the most effective way possible, 9 times out of 10, if not given the correct support, this is with behaviours that challenge.”

Many challenging behaviours are learned. If a challenging behaviour results in a desired outcome for an individual this may be repeated in the future. Our PBS team work to understand these links and provide individuals with alternative positive ways of expressing their wishes.

Ashley, has been passionate about communication from a young age, learning to sign as a child to support communication with a family member. This early experience inspired Ashley to learn how to communicate in Makaton and later British Sign Language, gaining full qualifications before further expanding his understanding with PECS (Picture Exchange Communication System) and VOCA (Voice Output Communication Aids) training, so he had all the tools to teach and develop communication skills for others.

The PBS team support individuals to overcome behaviour which challenges or limits their own opportunities, giving the individuals and their support teams the skills required. They are providing ongoing incredible stories of success.

Ashley started his journey with HFHC working with an individual who had very limited positive communication methods. “He could not communicate his needs and displayed challenging behaviour as a result. Teaching this individual to sign using Makaton and supporting his team to learn alongside him, minimised the behaviours displayed and opened up his world to many more opportunities – he then managed to gain a part time job where he could enjoy interacting in the wider community with the support of his team.”


Home From Home Care support incredible individuals who with the right assistance, at the right time, can accomplish what many would have once thought as unachievable. These accomplishments do not happen by fate, in fact so much time, energy, determination, commitment and consideration goes into so many tiny milestones that enable individual goals to be met. The milestone Ashley describes above is one of the hundreds of accomplishments achieved every single month.

At Home From Home Care we are continuing to promote and advance the use of Positive Behaviour Support to improve outcomes for every individual. We have proven with an increase in positive life experiences there comes a significant decrease in incidents of challenging behaviour.

We believe everyone has the opportunity to flourish and live a fulfilled life – having an outcome based, proactive approach to delivery of support enables us to really make that difference.

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