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This tool helps paid staff or volunteers, think about their roles and responsibilities in supporting a  person by identifying 'core responsibilities'  i.e. what support staff must do, either because it is important to that person or it keeps them healthy and safe, where they may use 'Judgement and creativity' and 'not our responsibility' where staff should not become involved. 
This tool helps

  • Staff clarifies their roles and responsibilities and establish the best way to support the person.
  • Prevent services from becoming involved in decisions which are outside their responsibility
  • Develop creative and effective ways of supporting people

An example of how to use the doughnut to sort responsibilities you can find in the story of John.


A template (see graphic) for the responsibilities tool you will find on the website and here.

The short description of the method in the minibook person centred thinking you find here.

An explanation of Responsibilities tool and examples you can also find on the website of Helen Sanderson Associates.


SANDERSON, Helen & GOODWIN, Gill (2007): Person Centred Thinking Stockport: HSA Press.