Young people with disabilities in Bury now have access to a new dedicated day service which is enabling them to do more of the things they enjoy.
Escape is being run by Bury social care provider Persona and will operate from Bury Adult Learning Centre on Haymarket Street.
Aimed at 18 - 30-year-olds, the new service will provide social, health and wellbeing and independent living opportunities/skills which are more suited to younger people.
Traditionally, younger people with a physical or learning disability have accessed adult social care services when they leave school or college. Until now, there has been no exclusive day service provision for people aged 18 to 30.
Kat Sowden, Managing Director of Persona Care and Support said: "This new service will truly reflect young people’s needs and interests. And it will be delivered by support staff of a similar age who are perhaps better able to understand the types of things these young people enjoy doing.
"Up until now, when children with a disability in the borough reach 18 one of three things can happen. Firstly, they could decide to stop receiving social care in the community, and might just stay at home with their parents or carers. Secondly, they might go out of the borough to access day services. And thirdly, they could access traditional day services which would be with adults of any age from 18 upwards.
"We recognised that young people don’t always want to do the same things which older people want to do. And they generally want to spend time with people of a similar age. So from this we developed Escape - a dedicated day service for young people in the borough with physical or learning disabilities."
Students with disabilities from Bury College helped to develop the new service, taking part in consultation events run by Persona to gather ideas and suggestions.
Recently refurbished rooms at Bury Adult Learning Centre will act as the base for Escape.
Facilities will include a projection screen to enjoy watching movies, IT facilities, kitchen and space to enjoy a range of activities including arts and crafts.
The centre will also act as a base for trips out to the shops, theatre, or cinema or to enjoy swimming, bowling or eating out.
Fatima Afzal, aged 25 and Usma Afzal, aged 28 are two sisters who are using the new service.
Fatima said: "When I left school for a number of years I was at home and I just got bored a lot of the time. When I started going to adult day services it was better but you don’t always want to do the things some of the older people want to do.
"The Escape project is really exciting because it means I will get to spend time with people more my own age. I’m looking forward to making new friends and getting out and enjoying things like shopping, going out for lunch and cooking."