It all began with a blank page
Disability was taboo
Once upon a time, in 1975, disability was something to be embarrassed about. Like it was your own fault and you chose it. Disability was a skeleton people tried hiding deep in the closet. And because disability was so under wraps, there was little or no opportunities for learning disabled children, opportunities that would enable them to flourish, develop skills and be wonderful, successful human beings.
And that's why Yad Voezer extended its helping hand...
A group of parents in Hackney, North London, see that there is a lack of services available to develop the skills of their learning disabled children. They want their children to have a better quality of life than that which is available. Despite the stigma associated with disability, they courageously stand up and establish a Parent group to develop services.
A weekend club opens and later expands to a full evening and weekend programme.
Yad Voezer employs a new project manager to continue expanding its day centre projects and improve opportunities for clients.
Yad Voezer receives two Lottery Awards over six years and develops two new services, ‘Reach Out’ to encourage outdoor sports and environmental activities; and ‘Hand in Hand’ a support system enabling people with learning disabilities to develop their independence skills.
Founders conduct a survey of local schools to assess the need and are surprised to find that 10% of children in mainstream schools have special educational needs. This encourages them to develop their services further and they set up a Registered Charity called Helping Hand UK - Yad Voezer.
First residential home for disabled young women opens, to the excitement of parents and clients.
Following the success of the Ladies’ home, Yad Voezer opens its second residential home this one for men.
Yad Voezer is contracted by London borough of Hackney to provide Supported Housing services for a group of women with learning disabilities in premises owned by Industrial Dwelling Society.
Yad Voezer receives Investor in People award, the first local organisation of its kind to receive such an award attesting to the high calibre of the organisation. As the organisation's activities expand; the need for a purpose built centre becomes imperative. After much research, and to clients’ and our great excitement, a suitable site for day centre purchased.
After much delay, building work at day centre finally started.
Reacrredited by Investors in People, third time running!
Yad Voezer staff tour a soap workshop for learning disabled in Jerusalem and following a course of instruction, open a similar project for our clients and residents, and is also used by the local community. The soap workshop provides numerous interesting and creative work opportunities for participants, including weighing, mixing, us of colour, fragrances, shaping the soap, cutting, decorating, wrapping, labelling and packaging for sales and distribution.
At last! Yad Voezer moves into its purpose built day centre situated at 9 Amhurst Park, London N16 5DH. Clients now benefit of a Snoezelen sensory room, garden, as well as many other new activities and opportunities.