Today’s guest blog is from Cllr Helen Holland, cabinet member for Adult Social Care.
One of the very best parts of my job as Cabinet Member for Adult Social Care is having the chance to visit some of the excellent initiatives we’re delivering to help transform the lives of older residents around the city.
Last week was no exception, when, alongside my colleague Cllr Ben Stokes from South Gloucestershire, I attended the formal opening of the brand new retirement village at Stoke Gifford. Bristol City Council has contributed over £3m to the development and, with South Gloucestershire, we are nominating to 81 of the flats there. This means that there are 81 flats that will be open for older people currently supported by Social Care either from Bristol City Council or South Gloucestershire Council.
The facilities here are exceptional, with spacious flats and a restaurant, games room, craft room, gym, library and more all on site. Meeting and chatting to some of the new residents who are enjoying a new lease of life since moving in, really gave me a picture of just how important it is for us to do more of this. We need to give older people the best possible quality of life in their later years – it makes sense for the individuals and it makes sense for the public purse too, it means there is much less chance older people will need nursing or residential care.
The next extra care scheme like this that will open is Haberfield House in Stockwood, which is being developed for our residents by Bristol Charities. You can find more information about Haberfield House here: https://www.bristolcharities.org.uk/housing/stockwood
Back in Stoke Gifford, it was a joy to meet Sheila and Brian – who moved in last November. When they moved in, Sheila was dependent on a wheelchair to get around, but as she told me, “I had never set foot in a gym before I came here, but thought I would give it a go, now after just a few weeks, I can just use my walker.” It is this sort of fantastic story that really motivates me to deliver more extra care housing.
In May I will be bringing a report to Cabinet that will set out our plans for just how we do that.
I will leave the last word to Sheila and Brian, who told me that when their family want to come to visit, they both have to check their diaries as there are so many activities they want to participate in. This is exactly what we want for all our older people – better lives at home.
To find out more information about the Better Lives programme and what it means you can click here: https://www.bristol.gov.uk/documents/20182/2678414/Market+Position+Statement/bdd21e05-0a76-94ae-4094-246ad9eb5739 “
To find out more about the Extra Care, like the one at Stoke Gifford you can click here: