It is with great sadness that we have said goodbye to our residential short break service for children and young people, Hamelin House, in Billericay, in February 2019.
Hamelin House first opened its doors to families in 1983 and since that date has offered care, support and endless hours of fun to literally hundreds of children and young people. In doing so the service has enabled many families to have a break from the demands of caring for their disabled child.
Through their inspections, Ofsted recognised Hamelin House as being a service that provided children and their families with care and support that was rated by them as being `good’.
Changes to the way in which short break services for children with disabilities are commissioned by children’s health and social care have resulted in far fewer children using the service over recent years and sadly Hamelin House is on longer financially viable. Hamelin Trust however remains committed to supporting children and young people with learning disabilities and their families. We continue to offer community and home based short breaks through our CQC regulated Outreach service. This offers a personalised short break approach to individual children by encouraging them to access community based activities of their choice. Support is also offered to a child in their own home if this is what they and their family prefer.
Frances Callaghan, who managed Hamelin House successfully for many years is remaining with the Trust and will be taking over management of our Outreach Service and several members of the Hamelin House staff team have chosen to remain working for Hamelin Trust across our other services.
The Trustees and Senior Management team of Hamelin Trust would like to thank all staff who have supported children at Hamelin House over the past 36 years for their contribution in making the service one that was very much valued by those who used it. Particular thanks are extended to the most recent staff team who remained committed to the children and young people accessing the service during the sad months that preceded its closure. Their commitment, professionalism and enthusiasm for giving children and young people a fun and person centred stay was evident until the day the service closed.
Our focus as always remains one of ensuring all of our services continue to provide all those using them with safe, personalised and effective support that is responsive to what they tell us they want and delivered in the way in which they choose.