A Twickenham residential service that supports adults with learning disabilities and mental health issues has just celebrated its 20th anniversary by holding a party for the people who live there, as well as staff, family members and friends from neighbouring services.
Guests of honour were deputy manager Bruno Verdosci, and two of the people* who live at the service – all three of whom have been at Kneller Road, run by private care-provider Regard, since it opened in 1996.
Bruno said: “I have stayed working here all that time because I love my job. Knowing that you are making a positive difference in people’s lives makes this job so rewarding, and Kneller Road has always been a well-run service and a great place to work.”
Previously Bruno had worked at the old Normansfield Hospital, transferring to the then new Kneller Road when Normansfield closed.
Service manager, Andrea Cully, said: “Bruno is a highly valued member of our team. He has such a lovely way with him when supporting the people who live with us and they love him.”
Kneller Road is a small residential service, currently long-term home to five individuals with complex needs and high levels of vulnerability.
Andrea Cully said: “Although the people who live with us are all non-verbal, we can tell from their behaviour that they are relaxed and enjoy the stability provided by our staff team.
“A lot of things have changed in the care sector over the past two decades – mainly in respect of regulation and accountability, which is all to the good.
“Regard was founded in 1994 and now cares for more than 1,100 people, with a dedicated staff of over 2,100 people working at 147 locations throughout the UK, so we’ve seen a great many changes.
“We’re recognised as innovators in the care sector, having pioneered some notable improvements such as Regard’s Personal Daily Organisers – now in operation in our services nationwide – which enable us to respond to people’s changing needs and provide crucial evidence to our funding bodies.”
An example of the way Regard caters for the changing needs of its service users can be seen in Kneller Road’s response to the increasingly complicated care requirements of one of the people who live there.
Andrea Cully explains: “Foundations are now in for a new property which is being built at the rear of Kneller Road in response to the changing health needs of one of our service users.
“The new accommodation will mean they will be able to remain living at the service which has been their stable home for as long as possible.”