Abbeyfield Scotland, the charity which provides support for older people, is introducing an innovative initiative that will expand its operations in Aberdeen through a seven-figure property investment with developer Dandara, coupled with the launch of a new tailored service and support programme designed to meet the individual needs of people in the community who are looking to live independently for longer.
The initiative, believed to be the first of its kind in Scotland, will see Abbeyfield Scotland (ASL) bring high quality, two-bedroomed bungalows to the private rental market at Dandara’s award-winning Hazelwood development in Aberdeen’s West End.
The contemporary bungalows, designed to offer residents easy access, space, flexibility and a dedicated support service provided by ASL, will be available for occupation from the summer of 2017. The initiative enables residents to enjoy self-contained properties, complementing Abbeyfield’s existing and much-loved shared, supported living model.
Support services provided by ASL will also be available to residents in these properties and in the future, they will also be available across Hazelwood and the wider Aberdeen area. Dandara will also market the service to buyers of its properties in Aberdeen.
The wider package will offer a variety of services ranging from “light touch” assistance with gardening and shopping through to the provision of personal care. The services are being developed in consultation with future users. Residents will be able to select the services that they need, with the option to add to these services as their wishes and requirements change.
ASL is investing more than £2million in both the properties and services provision.
James Craigie, Chairman of Abbeyfield Scotland said: “This is an exciting development for Abbeyfield Scotland. We are experts in the support of older people and we know that there is a demand for high quality housing for people who still want to remain independent but have access to support services as their needs change. We are investing significantly in the Aberdeen area and our relationship with Dandara, as their preferred care provider, allows us to provide the accommodation and a flexible range of support that the market is looking for.”
Dr Thomas Dodd, an expert in the care sector said: “Like elsewhere in Scotland, Aberdeen’s population is ageing, which indicates there is likely to be continuing growth in demand for suitable housing, support and other services to enable people to live independently and comfortably in later life. The combination of high quality housing with the provision of extended services addressing the support required as people age presents an excellent opportunity for people to live independently for longer, rather than depending on health or social care provision in later life.
“As well as supporting the individuals concerned, this begins to address the challenges set out in Aberdeen City and Shire’s Housing Need and Demand Assessment, as well as those faced by the Health and Social Care partnership in addressing personal outcomes and avoiding reliance on costly services.”
Gavin Wyley, managing director of Dandara in Aberdeen, said: “We are excited about the opportunity this relationship brings for Dandara and Abbeyfield Scotland, and look forward to delivering high quality housing which will help to meet the needs of senior residents in Aberdeen City and Shire.”
Abbeyfield Scotland has a strong history of providing a distinctive, supportive, social lifestyle for independent older people. Their supported independent living is based around choice and personalisation. The charity believes that providing safe and secure spaces, homely settings and opportunities for social connection is essential to the development of resilience to loneliness and its effects.