The Bath Community Resource Centre near Cleeve Green, can be something of a mystery to residents of Twerton. Why are these buildings here, and what goes on inside?
The centre is built on land donated by the wealthy Carr family who once lived in Twerton, to be used as an area where facilities could be built to help disabled people. The Carrswood Day Service is a day centre where adults with learning disabilities come to increase their skills and interests. The service aims to empower people with learning disabilities to enable them take on new challenges and responsibilities.
The service introduces adults with learning disabilities to activities such as pottery and art. It also supports the service-users in increasing their involvement with the community, for example by introducing some of the adults to the world of work in the kitchen of Roscoe’s Cafe at Twerton High Street.
The Carrswood Day Service is like a stepping stone that prepares people with learning disabilities for independence. It is important for people with learning disabilities to have the skills and confidence that they would like to achieve, to enable them to take an active role in the community.
Inside the day centre the corridors and communal areas are very spacious, which has a relaxing effect because you do not feel boxed in. There is a main kitchen preparing cooked lunches that are served up in the servery kitchen.
In one room a class might be brushing up on their Makaton – a form of sign language used by people who have difficulty in speaking. In another, the Feeling Good Group might be discussing and sharing what hair styles, clothes and makeup they like to use. There is also a sensory room where people with multiple disabilities can experiment with objects that produce lights, sounds or have a special feel etc.
Several additional services that work with adults with learning disabilities have offices in the building. The Adult Family Link Scheme recruits families who will take someone with a learning disability into their home and care for them for a short time. This gives the usual carers a break.
The Supported Living Service team visit people with learning disabilities, to check that they are managing to look after themselves. The Community Day Service tries to integrate people with learning disabilities into employment, using initiatives such as the gardening group Rake Up and Grow.
The staff at the Carrswood Day Service are employed in caring for people with special learning disabilities, and they have all undergone various training. Some workers will have received basic, work-based training at local colleges. Others will have worked their way up the ladder to take on the responsibilities that are required in caring for adults with learning disabilities. The staff play an important role in the community by helping vulnerable people to develop their skills.
Next to the Carrswood Day Service there are a couple of other buildings: the Cleeve Court residential care home for the elderly, and the Hazelmeir Day Centre for older people with dementia.