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Praise for Norwood

Last updated: 2004-03-01

Norwood’s Supported Housing Service has been commended for being a model of excellence, following its first review under the Government’s new Supporting People initiative.

The Government introduced the Supporting People initiative earlier this year so that, for the first time ever, the various funding streams available to Supported Housing Services would be amalgamated. Norwood’s Supported Housing services are run as part of the organisation’s Reach Out service which provides culturally specific residential accomodation for Jewish clients with mild to moderate learning disabilities.  The service is designed to  encourage tenants to live as independent a life as possible, with appropriate levels of support. 

This first review was carried out by the Redbridge Supporting People team and Social Services and involved a thorough audit of policies, procedures and working practices.  The aim was to ensure that the service was meeting the needs of its service users and was complying with best practice in service delivery according to the government’s Quality Assessment Framework.

During the review process, the Redbridge Supporting People team interviewed a selection of service users living in Norwood’s Supporting Housing scheme. Service users commented that the scheme “had given us independence and choice which we have never experienced before.”

Norwood has received a copy of the review report.  It concluded: “The organisation has demonstrated a model of excellence, which could be used as a reference point for similar schemes.  The particular success is around the successful delivery of the highest degree of choice and independence for people with learning disabilities.  It is very apparent that this ethos underpins both the scheme and the staff’s approach” 

As a result of this review, in May 2004 the Redbridge Supporting People team will be recommending to the commissioning body that Norwood’s Supported Housing service be granted a permanent three-year contract to fund all three of the organisation’s schemes in the Redbridge area.

Bernice Gabay, Norwood’s Supported Housing Service Manager is delighted with the outcome of the review.  She said: “It is a wonderful achievement for our Supported Housing service to be recognised as a model of excellence by an external review body.  Over the past couple of years we’ve worked incredibly hard to ensure that all our service users benefit from a quality service which is individualised for each our our clients.  The outcome of this review means that Norwood has successfully secured the Supported Housing service for our 16 tenants in the area, at a time when other voluntary sector service providers are facing cuts in statutory income.”