Health Minister opens two new centres for disabilities in Newry

January 31, 2012

The Minister for Health, Edwin Poots has officially opened two new centres in Newry for people with disabilities.

Windsor Day Centre is a £3.7million purpose-built facility providing day care for 39 adults with learning disabilities. Carrickore Children’s Respite Unit is a £2.5million facility providing respite care for eight children and young people with a disability and/or challenging behaviour from ages 4 to 18 years.

Mr Poots said: “Improving services for those with a learning disability has been one of my top priorities since I became Minister for Health. It has been my Department’s policy for a number of years to encourage and support people with learning disabilities to live in a community setting such as provided by Windsor Day Centre.

“The Centre not only offers a welcome and modern environment for users and staff in the new building, it also provides a range of activities which may lead to other opportunities for users, including workforce training.”

Referring to the new Carrickore respite unit, the Minister added: “Respite care is the most important thing we can offer to families and carers supporting dependent relatives at home. This is doubly important in the case of young people and adults with learning disability who need opportunities for social interaction, for stimulation and for improvement in independence.

“The Carrickore facility does just that and, moreover, allows parents and carers the necessary respite, knowing that their children are being looked after in a warm and caring professional environment.”

Windsor Day Centre places emphasis on a person centred approach providing a range of activities which aim to meet the personal, developmental, emotional and social needs of its service users.

The Carrickore respite unit ensures that individual and flexible care plans are in place for each young person. Also the unit offers short breaks for children with a disability and their families for up to 90 days per year.

Minister Poots concluded: “These two facilities are an excellent example of co-operation between professionals and service users and what can be achieved when we work together for the good of our clients.”