Choice of day care for the elderly and for adults with learning difficulties in South Holland may seem limited by the shutting down of council-run centres last year, with more closures to come in the next two years.
Personal budgets designed to give individuals more say in how they spend time out of the house have been introduced just when swingeing cuts to budgets of councils and charities have reduced the possibilities open to them.
It’s hard for vulnerable people and their carers to find out about other places where they could go to follow their interests and mix with others.
It’s a problem not lost on Mandy Crisp, previously a care worker at Halmer Grange, the hugely popular Spalding residential and day care home closed by the county council in 2011, who opened Spalding’s Fulney Hall Day Care staffed by former colleagues last October.
She said: “We get really good feedback from the people who come to us and their carers, with people who started one day a week booking for two, three and even four.
“Yet while we have capacity for 12 adults every weekday, we’re still only running at eight or nine a day and have temporarily stopped opening on Mondays.
“The fabulous reputation of Halmer Grange, where myself and three colleagues Jo Gray, Di Carter and Sue White all worked, as well as our excellent staff-client ratio of one to four, have been very helpful to us.
“But it was September this year before the cumbersome tendering process allowed us to get county council authorisation enabling people whose personal budget is council-managed to come here.
“Now at last we are able to welcome anyone of 60-plus whether they qualify for a personal budget or are funding themselves. We just want to get the message out to everyone that places are still available here.”
Contact Mandy on 01775 722422.