We at the DayCape team got the chance to do an interesting interview with the employees at Misa in Blackeberg in Stockholm. Misa is an organization that provides autism rehabilitation and they help and support for people with the condition. They help to develop your skills and capabilities so that you can participate in the society and in the working life in the way that fits you the best.
We at the DayCape team wanted to find out what it was like for the employees at Misa to work with people with this condition.
The employees at Misa was curies about be a part of creating something that could help the people that they are working with every day and eager to help. They told us about their work with great involvement and passion for what they do.
The employees experience that they need to have a lot of different focus during the workday, they might need to support one attendant with one task and send messages and remainders to another attendant at the same time. The remainders that the employers often send out can be everything from; wake up, take a shower, get dressed and leave the home, to time schedules with how long the specific activity should take, for example how long time they need to spend in the shower.
The support that Misa supply for their attendants is very different from person to person. The employees sees to every single individual and how they best can help them progress.
The support they provide can consist of clarifying different tasks and to help them schedule their day, when to take breaks and stuff like that. Sometimes it is better to give the attendants instructions like “unpack 12 more boxes and then take lunch” then to say “take lunch break at 12” it makes it easier to understand.
The employees at Misa describes how it can be extra hard for people with autism spectrum condition to get started and finishing tasks. They also tell us that to understand the concept time can be struggling. Many of the attendants have trouble with the diurnal rhythm and have sleeping issues.
The tools that many people at Misa uses to help is Handy, a handcomputer with calendar and remainders. They also work with Kat-Kit which includes calendar and visual tools that is supposed to make it easier to talk about emotions and to get to know your own emotions.
We asked the employees at Misa a lot about what they would like to see in these kinds of facilities that is supposed to help people with autism spectrum condition, and they seemed to agree on that simplicity and clarity are the keywords. The aid has to be easy to use and not to complicated.
They also told us about the importance in that everything can be adapted after every individual, everyone with autism spectrum condition has different needs, the facilities could have different levels for different levels of independence in life.
They also imply that it can be helpful with more than just one regular ringtone for remainders, other tones could be needed as well as photos or pictures for the person in question to register the remainder correctly. Also, different colors for different levels of the effort that needs to be put in to the activity can be helpful, red for a lot of energy needed and green for less, for example.
One of the employees at Misa suggest that a list of activities the attendants can engage in when they have spare time can be a big help. He sense that many of them have a hard time maintain them self during “free time”.
The staff also seems interested in improving the communication between attendants and the attendants family, relatives and homes. If the people in the attendants surrounding at home can have the same schedule as they have at Misa, it can make planning a lot easier. It is important to balance the activities at Misa during the day with other activities later at home for best results, for example so that not to many activities that demands a lot of energy end up on the same day.
Overall the personal at Misa truly impressed us. Their friendliness and engagement in what they do is extraordinary. It makes us happy to see such passionate people willing to help fellow people.