Geraldine Cregg, Marie Walsh

Personal Development, Relationships and Staying Safe

Training pack

A training pack for staff supporting adults with intellectual disabilities, high support and complex needs

This training resource gives frontline staff the skills and knowledge to support safe personal relationships for people with complex or high support needs.



In light of The Ryan Report (2009) this comprehensive training pack will provide staff with the knowledge and practical skills to ensure the safety and personal development of individuals with intellectual disabilities, high support and complex needs.

Personal Development, Relationships and Staying Safe: A training pack for staff supporting adults with intellectual disabilities, high support and complex needs will provide frontline caregivers the skills and knowledge to teach and inform their service users about a variety of complex and sensitive issues around developing their own identity, forming relationships and staying safe in the context of physical and sexual abuse.

The aims of this training course are to increase staff awareness, understanding and knowledge of the topic of staying safe, the promotion of personal development and relationships specifically for persons with high support and complex needs i.e. people with a severe to profound level of intellectual disability. As well as this, the course can be used to provide staff with practical skills to help individuals who use intellectual disability services to learn about safety, personal development and relationships.


<>Personal Development, Relationships and Staying Safe: A training pack for staff supporting adults with can be a valuable resource for any staff who work with people with learning disabilities, including: learning disabilities support staff, personal assistants, volunteers, key workers and other front line worker


ISBN: 9781910366974
Publisher: Pavilion Publishing and Media
Publication: 13 November 2015
Content: Module 1: Self-awareness and self-identity

Who am I?
1. Know and responding to own name
2. My room and my home.
3. Where do I come from
4. My body
5. Choices
6. Things I like
7. Self-reliance and independence.
8. Personal abilities and talents.
9. Using and enjoying my senses.
10. Self awareness
11. Gender awareness
12. Developmental appropriateness
13. Awareness of being an adult
14. Communication
15. Feelings


16. Keeping clean/personal hygiene
17. Looking nice
18. Clothes
19. Mirrors; recognising self

Module 2: Relationships

Social Skills

1. Conversation skills
2. Communication skills; verbal and non-verbal
3. People I know -versus- people I don’t know, i.e. what is appropriate behaviour, not appropriate     behaviour
4. Going to parties, celebrating special occasions etc.
5. Taking turns and sharing


6. Identifying barriers to friendships.
7. Overcoming barriers to friendships
8. Identifying friends and creating opportunities to make friends
9. Identifying people I like/ people I don’t like


10. Help to foster family relationships?
11. Visiting my home

Module 3: Being safe and minimising risk

General safety

1. Familiar people –versus- strangers (knowing the difference)
2. Saying ‘no’, ‘stop,’ etc.
3. Developing communication skills
4. Recognising vulnerability and risk; awareness
5. Recognising and reporting abuse
6. Responsibilities (I would do this irrespective of the person’s wishes / I would not do this if the person did not want it)

Intimate Care

7. Increasing independence and self-help skills
8. Increasing predictability
9. Experiencing personal care
10. Good Practice Guidelines
11. Safe and comfortable ways of being touched
12. Ensuring and emphasizing privacy

Module 4: Sexual expression

1. Different forms of sexual expression
2. Staff exercise: Behaviours I find difficult
3. The promotion and maintenance of positive relationships
4. Masturbation & private and public behaviour
5. Physical and sexual arousal
6. Appropriate contact with others
7. Support for staff: decisions should not be made in isolation
8. Intimate relationships
9. The Law: Intellectual disability, capacity and consent

This multi-media resource includes:

Learner Workbook
PowerPoint presentation.


Marie Walsh> is a registered psychologist with extensive experience in the area of intellectual disability. Marie currently works with both children and adults with intellectual disability who present with co-morbid conditions and behaviour that challenges. A long-time advocate for safeguarding vulnerable individuals with intellectual disability and the prevention of risks to vulnerable adults in various service settings, Marie strives to raise awareness of these issues with colleagues and organisations. It is the well-being of vulnerable adults that has motivated Marie to develop this training programme. Geraldine Cregg is a senior clinical psychologist who has worked in the field of Intellectual Disability since 1995.
She has worked extensively with adult survivors of sexual abuse both with and without an Intellectual Disability and has worked primarily with service users who present with multiple and complex needs.
Her heightened awareness of the vulnerability of those with the greatest levels of disability and high dependency needs led to her collaboration in the development of this training programme.


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