Who we are!
DIAL LEEDS is a very small but active charity and was established by volunteers in 1979 as a local Disabled People’s User Led Organisation (DPULO).
The Management Committee, paid staff and volunteers are mostly disabled people who have a wide range of impairments and long term conditions. Others are either carers, older people or have another personal or professional interest for being involved in the organisation.
We aim to be representative of the people who use, or are likely to use our services including people with: physical or sensory impairments, learning disabilities/difficulties, mental health issues or long-term conditions.
DIAL LEEDS Management Committee:
As a DPULO the DIAL LEEDS Management Committee is a team of “experts by experience” – with lived experienced of various impairments and long-term health conditions alongside non-disabled people with other expertise including business, financial and management skills.
We are in the process of organisational change/development and new ventures to ensure our future sustainability.
Our work has its roots in the social model of disability and ensuring equality, diversity and inclusion.
The DIAL LEEDS model of service delivery is peer support where disabled people come together to support and provide services for other disabled people.
DIAL LEEDS offers a friendly safe and supportive environment for all disabled people. We do this through direct lived experience.
The services we offer are:
• Not for profit – any surplus income is used to develop and deliver more and better services for disabled people
• Personalised and flexible – tailored to the needs of the individual disabled person
• Impartial – always in the best interests of the individual disabled person
DIAL LEEDS exists to:
• Ensure that disabled people are not disadvantaged through a lack of knowledge of their rights or the awareness of available opportunities
• Provide support when necessary to enable disabled people to express their needs and wishes effectively
We aim to empower disabled people to overcome discrimination and disadvantage by raising awareness of abilities, choices, rights and opportunities.
Everything that we do contributes to independent living, inclusion and empowerment. Our work is all about maximising choice and control for people over their lives.
The DIAL LEEDS vision is for inclusive and supportive communities through ‘A people’s place – for all to grow!’
This will be a vibrant independent service user led centre of excellence for opportunities, health and wellbeing.
Increasing demands on the community and voluntary sector for holistically meeting the health, social care and other needs of disabled people including supporting the most vulnerable in our society, means this vision is more important than before.
Our future mission is to meet these needs and responsibilities through direct support services and also by enabling self-reliance as well as harnessing the power of community and peer support networks.
See Our Vision: A People’s Place – for all to grow! (page link)
What we do:
Following the end of our Disability Information and Advice Service at 31/03/17 we will be doing things differently. We are planning the following range of support for disabled people by disabled people and social enterprise services through lived experience of disability and long term health conditions:
Support for disabled people by disabled people.
“A helping hand from someone who understands”
Due to a lack of funding we are no longer able to offer a full peer support service, and at this time can only offer this service to specific foodbank users.
Disabled people using and sharing knowledge and learning from their own experiences to support other disabled people.
A “pop up”, drop in Happiness Café, funded by The People’s Health Trust. This is a further source of peer support with a focus on building social connections alongside therapeutic activities for holistic wellbeing. The aim is to enable local disabled people to shape activities in their community and neighbourhoods.
Pay for services for disabled people, their carers and professionals delivered through lived experience of disability and long-term health conditions. We are developing this service and hope to have it implemented by early in 2018/19.
Policy and influencing work:
As well as the services we offer for individuals, we also aim to influence wider service provision and policy and decision making in terms of the needs, preferences and aspirations of disabled people.
This is a longer term process to support service development so we can help bring about changes and improvements that will benefit all disabled people rather than dealing only with our clients specific issues in isolation.
DIAL LEEDS is a member of the following forums, networks and groups to enable us to make representations that give disabled people a stronger voice:
• Disability Rights UK
• Engaging Voices
• Forum Central (Leeds)
• Leeds Food Aid Network
• Making it Real Development Group
• Physical and Sensory Impairment Network (Leeds)
• Tribunal User Group
• Yorkshire and Humber TUC Disabilities Forum
• Welfare Reform Strategy Board (Leeds)