4 Oct 2019
The £15m Space and Place project, managed by the Community Foundation comes to an end this month as its 30th project, Destined in Derry~Londonderry opens. The National Lottery Community Fund Programme supported 30 projects to make better use of new and existing outdoor and indoor unused spaces in local communities across Northern Ireland, helping them to come together to identify a shared vision for their area and work together to deliver it.
Destined, as with all the projects supported through the Space and Place Programme has been made possible by National Lottery players and the new Learning Disability Centre in Derry~Londonderry received £1,300,000. Developing the skills, confidence and the social inclusion of people with a learning disability has been given a massive boost with the opening of the new purpose built centre located on the banks of the river Foyle.
The project, is the culmination of seven years of planning and includes a reception, training rooms, café, restaurant and fully equipped kitchen. The Centre has as its primary aim to enhance the inclusion of people with a learning disability with the wider community which the live in and breaking down stigma and prejudices that impact on their daily lives and that of their families.
Last week The Community Foundation staff and trustees joined Destined at their grand opening celebrations, sharing their new centre with the community and celebrating their success.
Michael Hughes, Space & Place Programme Co-ordinator said: “As one of our three Flagship projects the Learning Disability Centre is yet another example of how the Space and Programme has supported a community to define itself and to bring forward a development that has totally transformed an underused space within the city of Derry. This new Centre is a fitting tribute to the Programme as even in its planning and development there have been many examples of enhanced community connectivity and an increase in cohesion, sharing and respect. The group and the community are to be commended for demonstrating the power of a community development project that has consulted extensively and has led to a huge level of community support and provision of a valuable asset for not only people with a learning disability across the North West but also the wider community.
Dermot O’Hara from Destined said ‘We are delighted to be at the stage that we are finally opening our new Centre, there have been many challenges along the way. We are now in the position with our modern Centre to deliver a community wide social inclusion programme for people with learning disabilities throughout the North West region.
Eileen Mullan, NI Committee Member for The National Lottery Community Fund, said: “We believe this wonderful new space, which has been made possible thanks to the generosity of National Lottery players, will make a real difference to the lives of many local people by providing a space for them to come together and improve the area that they live in.”
For more information on how Space and Place has transformed communities please visit their website here.
Excited to announce that the Space and Place programme has been nominated in the Guardian Newspaper Public Service Awards 2019 under the Transformation category. It has been recognised for its outstanding public service projects that have gone through major change to benefit the community. Stay tuned for updates!**
Destined members created the below video to educate the general public on learning disabilities. Great work everyone!