Mencap’s ‘Omagh Supported Living Service’ for people with a learning disability, was officially launched on Wednesday 4 March, by Mervyn Storey, MLA, Minister for Social Development.

This new service will provide 16 people with a learning disability, from the Omagh area, the opportunity to live independently within a range of new and refurbished accommodation of the highest modern standard.  

Sylvia Hamilton, who lives in the new accommodation said: “I am so happy with my new room and my new house. For the first time I have my own key to my front door and can enjoy the space and privacy of my own bedroom".

The three properties on the Dublin Road and Dergmoney View in Omagh will allow Mencap to support each person through their own individual plan, which will help them to say how they wish to be supported throughout their day.

The service has been developed in partnership with Oaklee Trinity and with significant investment from the Department of Social Development, The Northern Ireland Housing Executive through the Supporting People programme and the Western Health and Social Care Trust.

Mencap’s support will enable people with a learning disability to take more control of their lives and ambitions and by exercising greater choice to live independently as an integral member of their community. People using the new service come from a range of settings, some have lived at home with their parents whereas others have been living in residential care for many years.

Barry McMenamin, Mencap in Northern Ireland’s Head of Personal Support and Housing said:  "Mencap is very excited about the opening of this innovative service. This new accommodation and personalised support will provide an opportunity to transform the lives of each individual we support."

“Mencap has been supporting and working with people with a learning disability in Omagh and the south west for over 25 years. The original Ashley House was opened in 1990, in partnership with Oaklee Trinity, and needed massive modernisation to provide effective services for the future. This service will further increase our capacity to support people locally with a learning disability to live independently in their community.”

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For further information on this media release contact:

Brian Kennedy, Mencap Communications in Northern Ireland on 029 9069 0156 or 0786 406 7618 or email brian.kennedy@mencap.org.uk.

Notes to Editors

Mencap

There are 33,000 people with a learning disability in Northern Ireland (1.5m in the UK). Mencap in Northern Ireland works to support people with a learning disability and their families and carers by fighting to change laws and improve services and access to education, employment and leisure facilities. Mencap supports thousands of people with a learning disability to live their lives the way they want.

Mencap is also one of the largest providers of services, information and advice for people with a learning disability across Northern Ireland, England, and Wales. You can find out more about our services by calling Mencap’s Helpline on 0808 808 1111 or by visiting http://www.mencap.org.uk/northern-ireland

What is learning disability?

A learning disability is a reduced intellectual ability and difficulty with everyday activities – for example household tasks, socialising or managing money – which affects someone for their whole life.

Developmental delay, or global developmental delay, might include a delay in learning to walk or talk, developing motor skills, learning new things and interacting with others socially and emotionally.

Mencap’s Personal Support and Housing

Personal Support and Housing provides personal support services to individuals with a learning disability within the community and delivers a high quality supported living and residential care services. Following the changes in Omagh, along with Mencap’s three other services in Banbridge, Bangor and Keady, Mencap will provide support to 59 people with a learning disability in supported living and residential accommodation.

  • Riversley, Banbridge was initially established in 2001 as a mixed residential and independent living scheme. Since 2003 it has provided supported housing services and has the potential to support 22 people
  • Princetown Road, Bangor was initially established as a residential home in 1986. In 2008 the site was redeveloped in partnership with Oaklee Housing to provide accommodation for 15-plus people
  • Fairgreen, Keady was established in 1993 as a residential care home. It has been a supported housing scheme since 2003 supporting six people in their own home to access community services and activities.

Western Health & Social Care Trust

The Western Health and Social Care Trust provides health and social care services across five council areas of Limavady, Londonderry, Strabane, Omagh and Fermanagh. Employing approximately 12,000 staff, it spends £459 million annually in the delivery of health and social care services, from a number of hospitals, community based settings and in some cases directly in individuals’ homes.

For more information visit www.westerntrust.hscni.net.