Friday 14 February 2014
There are many hundreds of Islanders with care and support needs living in the community who would benefit from extra care housing, according to a report going before the States in March outlining proposals to proceed immediately with the construction of Phase 2 of the extra care housing projects at Le Grand Courtil and La Nouvelle Maraitaine.
To be built on the sites of the Housing Department's two ageing residential homes - Longue Rue House and Maison Maritaine - Phase 2 will add an additional 45 flats to the 117 flats currently being built in Phase 1.
Housing Minister, Deputy Dave Jones said:
'The new flats in the Vale and St Martin's are intended to provide an alternative to residential care for Islanders that have care and support needs that are difficult to manage in their home environment. The new flats will be the next best thing to staying in your own home, as care and support will be on hand round the clock, but only as and when people need it, enabling them to maintain their independence within a community setting.'
Phase 1 of each project was given States' approval in 2011 and construction commenced the following year. Phase 1 of La Nouvelle Maraitaine is due for completion in June 2014; Le Grand Courtil in the Autumn; with their first occupants moving in a few months later in each case.
The Guernsey Housing Association is responsible for the construction of the developments and will also act as landlord for the people living in the two schemes. Its Chief Executive, Steve Williams, said:
'We've identified an opportunity to reduce the cost of constructing Phase 2 of the projects by beginning their construction immediately after completion of Phase 1 at each site. All in all, we calculate we will save about £450,000, which is good for the GHA and good for the States.'
The total combined cost for Phase 2 of the projects is £9.42m, of which the States' contribution by means of a fixed capital grant from the Housing Department is £3.25m.
Initially, Phase 1 of each scheme is principally intended to provide accommodation for the residents of Longue Rue House and Maison Maritaine, plus some persons with a learning disability currently accommodated in residential group homes run by HSSD. Upon opening, a limited number of flats will also be available for persons currently living in the community.
Deputy Jones commented:
'If we could have built all 162 flats in one go we would have done so, but because we had to keep our ageing care homes operational while the new flats were being built, we had to phase the two developments. With the completion of Phase 1 of the projects later this year, we can demolish the care homes and finish what we've started by building the remaining flats.
Once built, we have agreed with HSSD that 13 of the new flats in Phase 2 will be for people in the community that HSSD have identified will benefit from living in an extra care housing scheme. These are principally adults with longstanding health and social care needs currently living with elderly parents, but the remaining 32 will be available for occupation by open application.'
The Housing Department will be providing care and support to the occupants of Le Grand Courtil and La Nouvelle Maraitaine. Its Director of Older People's Housing, Care and Support, Lois King, said:
'Over 100 people aged between 23 and 96 have expressed an interest in moving into one of the extra care flats in Phase 1, which means that if they were already built we could already fill the flats at both Phase 1 and 2 at each scheme. However, there are only 38 flats available in Phase 1 once we've accounted for residents moving into the new schemes from ours and HSSD's care homes, so we're already oversubscribed. Nonetheless, if anybody else thinks they would benefit from living in extra care housing we'll be pleased to receive an application, albeit it's clear we can't accommodate everyone who applies.'
Housing Department Chief Officer, Stephen Langford, added:
'To qualify for extra care housing you will need to be an adult aged 18 or over, who requires at least four hours care and support per week. Application forms and further information on how to apply are available from the Housing Department and can also be downloaded from the States' website. We encourage anyone interested in applying to do so before Friday 28 March, when we will start the process of deciding who will be offered flats in Phase 1 of the two schemes.'
There are also 10 flats to be purchased on a partial ownership basis in Phase 1: 3 at La Nouvelle Maraitaine and 7 at Le Grand Courtil. Stephen Langford commented:
'The closing date for applications for these flats is 14 March 2014, as many of the purchasers of these are likely to need to sell their existing property before they can purchase a flat at one of the two schemes. The earlier closing date reflects the time required to do this.'
Persons who have already registered their interest with the Housing Department will be contacted direct to arrange for them to complete an application form.
Living in extra care housing enables individuals with care and support needs to remain independent, but with the reassurance of an on-site care and support team 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
In Phase 1, Le Grand Courtil in St Martin's comprises 44 one-bedroom and 19 two-bedroom flats. La Nouvelle Maraitaine in the Vale comprises 39 one-bedroom and 15 two-bedroom flats. In Phase 2, Le Grand Courtil comprises 9 one-bedroom and 18 two-bedroom flats; and La Nouvelle Maraitaine 12 one-bedroom and 6 two-bedroom flats.
Both extra care housing schemes will have restaurants open to the public, lounges, a hairdresser and therapy suite. Additionally, at La Nouvelle Maraitaine, there will be a purpose-built day centre operated by HSSD primarily for people with dementia: this replaces the existing service at 'The Meadows'.
The States Report outlines the financial and non-financial benefits of living in extra care housing.
Applications for Phase 1 are open to people aged 18 and above who need at least four hours of care and support per week. This may include help with personal care, such as washing and dressing, or help with shopping, meal preparation, housekeeping and so on.
Prospective applicants can find more information by going to the States' website: www.gov.gg/extracare; and/or can request an application from the Housing Department by telephoning Rosie Creed on tel. no. 717187.
The GHA will shortly issue a separate press release about partial ownership applications for the extra care housing schemes.
Rachel Lambert - Executive Officer, Housing Department