Cornerstone marked the beginning of construction at a new site in Dumbarton to provide specialist homes for people with autism and complex support needs in West Dunbartonshire with a groundbreaking ceremony at the site.
Once completed in late summer, the Baxter View homes will provide accommodation for people who are currently living in facilities in other local authority areas due to the lack of suitable housing within West Dunbartonshire.
The planned accommodation, which can provide purpose-built homes for up to 10 people, will allow a greater degree of independent living than is normally the case for individuals with high level needs.
The accommodation will comprise six single bedroom properties and two 2-bedroom properties – either for residents who would like to share or for those who require sleepover services.
Cornerstone’s chief executive, Edel Harris, was joined by regional director for the West, Hazel Brown; director of business development Keith Taylor; operational manager Tricia McCoy; Mike Burrows of contractors Fleming Buildings Limited; and the general manager of learning disability services at West Dunbartonshire Council, David Elliott, for the groundbreaking at the site on Garshake Road, which is currently derelict.
Staff are now being recruited for Baxter View, which is to be named after Cornerstone’s founder, Nick Baxter, who died last year at the age of 65.
A fundraising campaign to raise much needed funds for the development will be launched soon, with the charity planning some exciting local events to help boost the pot.
Hazel Brown, Cornerstone’s Regional Director for the West of Scotland, said: “The groundbreaking marks the beginning of this exciting project.
“We are looking forward to developing this new service with West Dunbartonshire Council and supporting people in the community to enjoy a valued life - a valued life where people are accepted in society, have the opportunity to make friends and are given the chance to do meaningful things with their time.
“We believe enabling people to have their own home and live independently is an important step in this process."
The overall design of the living accommodation has taken into account the specific needs of the people who are to be supported at Baxter View, while ensuring the surroundings are as homely as possible.
Numerous design features have been incorporated, including enhanced storage to provide an essential clutter-free environment, and multi-level controlled access to kitchens to ensure residents can live as safely and independently as possible.
Cornerstone has also utilised technology solutions and access control systems to ensure the safety and security of occupants.
This development will be operated by Cornerstone as a Centre of Excellence and will provide the opportunity for the team to share learning and best practice with other care providers.
Cornerstone provides care and support services for more than 2,000 adults, young people and children across Scotland who live with learning disabilities, physical disabilities, mental health problems and other support needs.
The charity has been providing services in West Dunbartonshire since 1999 and currently supports 206 people across 22 services in the area.