Cherise playing pool with a resident

Residents of Encourage, the Grand Union Housing Group (GUHG) brand that encompasses its supported housing services, will soon be benefitting from new sensory equipment for their accommodation thanks to fundraising efforts from five people running the London Marathon on 23 April.

Encourage works in partnership with care providers, delivering care and support services for adults with learning disabilities and/or mental health issues as well as extra care housing, retirement housing, community alarm and support, domestic abuse refuges and day care for people living with dementia.

GUHG’s Head of Supported Housing, Deborah Stuart, said: “We provide a welcoming environment for residents and provide tailored services to meet their needs. If this is the resident’s first home, we help them to develop skills so they can live more independently. Residents receive personalised support packages and are consulted and involved in decisions about their home.

“It’s always inspiring when people want to raise money to help improve the lives of others so we’re very grateful to the Marathon runners who are fundraising for Encourage this year.”

One of those runners is Cherise Berridge, Area Development Manager at GUHG, who visited the Poplar Tree Court supported living scheme in Bedfordshire recently. Cherise said: “I’m running for Encourage because providing quality accommodation and first-class services to those in supported housing is a very important part of what we do at GUHG. We already make a big difference to the lives of those tenants but by going the extra mile (or 26!), we can do just a little bit more to help.

“I’ve never been a runner but taking part in the London Marathon was on my bucket list, so I was delighted to have been given a golden bond place for Encourage in this year’s race. It will be a huge challenge but I’m hoping to complete it in under five hours and raise lots of money for a great cause.”