A project which allows older people in Manchester and Blackpool to continue living independently with the peace of mind of 24-hour-a-day care on site has won an award as part of a competition highlighting the vital community work carried out by housing associations across the country.
Great Places Housing Group’s Going the ‘Extra’ Mile project won the Better Health award for the North West in the National Housing Federation’s Community Impact Awards.
The housing association runs three schemes for people aged over 55 – Tulloch Court and Elk View Court in Blackpool and The Byrons in Manchester – which are a far cry from traditional old people’s homes. Residents have their own self-contained apartments with their own front doors, but also receive a tailor-made support package to keep them happy and well.
Everything at the centres is focused on the individual. This supportive but hands-off environment means older people can access help from a raft of professionals including GPs, nurses and social workers without the need to go into hospital, reducing the financial burden on the NHS.
Residents are also invited to take part in a range of activities including Tai Chi and dance classes, and can access the services of an on-site hairdresser. Great Places staff are also on hand to signpost residents to their financial inclusion team, who can provide support with much-needed benefits advice and help on how to manage their money.
Jane Greenhalgh, assistant director of housing services at Great Places, said: “We are all thrilled with this award. Supported housing is at the heart of our organisation. Our Extra Care facilities allow older people to continue to live full and happy lives and often support residents to achieve things they wouldn’t have dreamt of.”
Great Places Housing Group is a worthy winner of the North West Community Impact Awards. This project is a great example of how housing associations go far beyond providing people with homes
Daniel Klemm, National Housing Federation North West Lead Manager
Daniel Klemm, National Housing Federation North West Lead Manager, said: “Great Places Housing Group is a worthy winner of the North West Community Impact Awards. This project is a great example of how housing associations go far beyond providing people with homes – they can create healthy and happy places where older people can live with support and dignity.
“Last year alone housing associations helped more than eight million people across the country and invested more than half a billion pounds back into communities.”
The Community Impact Awards recognise the vast range of neighbourhood projects run by housing associations above and beyond providing homes. The national winner of the awards, which are sponsored by Morrison and 24housing magazine, will be announced early next year.