Fundraising campaign launched to save day care centre in Kilburn

Residents are fighting to open the People's Centre for Change in Kilburn

Residents are fighting to open the People's Centre for Change in Kilburn - Credit: Archant

Camden Council plan to sell the building where New Shoots Day Care Centre is based

Disabled people and carers have joined forces to raise vital funds to take over a day care centre in Kilburn and prevent council chiefs from selling the building.

Community group, The People’s Centre for Change, wants to take over and run New Shoots Day Care Centre in Shoot-up Hill.

They are determined to raise the £1.5million needed to save what they say is “a vital service for disabled residents and their families”.

New Shoots was one of four council-run day care centres outlined for closure by Camden Council in 2010.

The centre, where around 40 disabled people are looked after daily, was due to be sold off this year.

Users would be moved to one larger building in Kentish Town.

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But now campaigners have created a business proposal called the People’s Centre for Change (PCFC), which they hope will turn the centre into a social enterprise and allow them to manage it themselves.

With the council’s backing, they have been given an extra two years and are embarking on a mission to raise enough money to buy the building outright.

Nalan Bedding, who cares for her sister, a Cerebral Palsy sufferer, is one of the organisers and trustees at PCFC.

She said: “It’s not just a day care centre – it’s so much more than that. It’s a community resource where people can build up friendships.

“At the moment service users are fearful it’s closing down. We want to give them a choice and create some stability by taking it over ourselves.

“We have around 40 service users at the moment but when you take into account their families there are hundreds of people who could be impacted by the move.”

The group currently runs weekly sessions on Wednesdays and held an open day last Saturday to outline its plans.

If the campaigners are successful they plan to run a variety of activities and open the building up to the wider community.

By approaching funding organisations including the National Lottery, and with the help of generous donations and fundraising events, they hope to be able to run the centre full time.

Ms Bedding added: “We are grateful we have been given time to raise the money but now the hard work starts.”

Camden Council said it was unable to comment.