Wolverhampton dementia services facing move to new venue
Plans to transfer dementia day services from a community centre in Wolverhampton are being explored by the council, following recent vandal attacks and a drop in attendances.
Blakenhall Community Resource Centre, in Haggar Street, opened in 1997 and provides day care for people with functional and/or dementia disorders from Mondays to Fridays.
However the council’s Corporate Landlord Service, which manages the building, fears it is increasingly being targeted by vandals due to a large part of the building being closed.
The current day service has the capacity to provide 75 places per week to 32 older people, although the council has said the venue is quite isolated and only people with dementia or support staff ever visit it.
It is now looking at transferring the services to the Action for Independence venue at Albert Road, near West Park, and has launched a consultation for feedback.
In a report to the council, head of adult provision Tom Denham said: “The existing building used by the service does not meet the expectations of an up-to-date, fully accessible and inclusive day service provision in terms of both the facilities and activities available to be undertaken there.
“Current provision at the Blakenhall Community Resource Centre is within a building that is not fully accessible, which can result in the inability to accept referrals of patients with significant mobility issues.
“Some external areas are currently difficult to access even by people who have lesser mobility issues.
“An option to consult on is to utilise the current Adult Provision venue at Action for Independence, Albert Road. The facilities are much more accessible than Blakenhall, the venue has undergone recent renovation, there is a large garden area, changing place and toilet facilities, an IT suite, accessible rehabilitation kitchen and the venue is close to West Park and the city centre.
“Another option is to remain at Blakenhall, but substantial capital investment would be required and the service would still be isolated from other community based services and city amenities,” he added.
“The Action for Independence venue is equipped to support the service, there is capacity within the venue and day support is already provided there for people with other disabilities.
“This venue is well used by a number of council teams, partner organisations and the voluntary sector, making it a well visited part of the city community. It is a more inclusive venue as opposed to the isolating effect of the current Blakenhall venue.”
Meals are currently provided at Blakenhall, but the consultation will enable people to think about alternate options such as Meals on Wheels or food brought in from home.
“It is intended that a move out of the Blakenhall venue and in to the Action for
Independence venue would help the people who use the service to enjoy greater interaction with other members of the community,” added Mr Denham.
The approved 2019-20 budget for Blakenhall day service is £269,000. The council’s cabinet is set to discuss the matter on January 22.
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