In October, we held our 57th Annual General Meeting which showcased our current successes and future plans. This time last year, members highlighted certain gaps in our services and we sought to change that. As a result, this year’s meeting was titled, ‘Responding to Members’.
Backler House Tenant, Patricia Brownsell and her sister, had brought to our attention the fact we did not have a service in place to support older tenants. At the meeting, Operations Manager, Tim Birchley, discussed the purchase of a new property in Margate which will provide services to older people as well as those with higher support needs. An existing property, William House, will now be developed to offer a much needed transition service, meeting the needs of people who wish to gain a greater level of independence and move on to live as independently within their community.
On the night, tenant, Patricia Brownsell, commented; “I have been living in Backler House for 8 years and am happy. I have made lots of good friends. I will now be moving to the bungalow and will have more support from staff. I shall still come and see my friends at Gateway and Backler House. I am a bit nervous but glad and looking forward to the new move as well as having a nice garden.”
Trustee, Paul Pinder and Operations Manager, Karen Loughrill discussed the importance of the new resource centre in the Canterbury district. It remains small for now, but we are looking to attract new members in order to grow the service further.
Tim also explained that a new Day Resource venue had been found by our members in Swale. We look forward to offering a five day service, but also offer evening and weekend opportunities at the earliest opportunity.
Chair of the Executive Committee, Claire Goldfinch, stepped down after a successful four years in her role. She will remain on the committee as Treasurer. Previous Vice-Chair, Amy Rutland was newly elected as Chair and looks forward to taking on challenges the next year might bring.