Quite simply, it is a toilet with extra space and two extra bits of equipment to assist those who cannot just get themselves onto a toilet.
No big deal, just a hoist to lift a person from their wheelchair and an adult sized changing table to change pads or to sort clothes and switch to a toilet sling before hoisting to the toilet.
Take a look at these examples.
Most of these rooms are not huge, but they make a huge difference.
Many families struggle to lift their loved ones and lay them on the toilet floor in order to change soiled pads. How horrific is that?
Yet, for many, it is the best option they have.
But what happens when people are too big to lift? Or to those who don’t want to risk going out in case they can’t hold on?
If you could not stand or use your arms to self transfer, if you needed to get your wheelchair beside the toilet, if you need to turn a powered wheelchair to lock the door behind you, or if you needed space to care for a mobile but distressed person who needed to lay down for a pad to be changed, how would you manage in some of these?
And they are also needed by the family and carers of the people who use them.
Carers need to go too and sometimes we all feel the need for privacy.
Many wheelchair users can self transfer but might need to get their chair right next to the toilet, which is impossible in many places. They are also invaluable to many ambulant people including those with bowel problems, autism or profound and multiple learning disabilities for example.
And one day they might be needed by you, or by someone you love.
Changing Places facilities are now mandatory in larger new building and developments, thanks to the tireless efforts of many people over many years. It should never have been a battle.
There is funding available for councils. Please contact yours and share this information with them.