Hornchurch charity for older people, Tapestry, may be forced to close without ‘pragmatic approach’ from council

For 71 years the charity has provided a variety of support and care services for those with dementia

For 71 years the charity has provided a variety of support and care services for those with dementia. Picture: Tapestry - Credit: Tapestry

After 71 years, Tapestry, formally known as Age Concern Havering, may be forced to close due to actions to delay the spread of coronavirus, unless the council steps in, says chief executive Anthony Lowe.

He told the Recorder: “We provide care, companionship, activities and much needed healthy meals to over 180 elderly people, and people living with dementia, at our community hubs in Hornchurch and Harold Hill every week.

“The new movement restrictions, which we support to protect our elderly, will prevent these people attending our hubs which may leave them isolated and vulnerable at home.”

The council funds the charity to provide care and support for the elderly at the hubs.

“Unless the council reviews its payment processes and now pays for us to support them at home we will not be able to help safeguard these vulnerable people during this challenging time,” Mr Lowe explained.

“Worse than that, without a more flexible and pragmatic approach from the council, we will, in the worse case scenario which is a real and imminent possibility, have to close the charity down.

“This will leave the people of Havering without an important and valued service for the elderly, after the coronavirus pandemic is over, which would be a tragedy for the people of Havering.”

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A council spokeswoman said: “Like all of our voluntary sector partners, our absolute focus at this time is to make sure that Havering’s most vulnerable residents continue to receive the support they need.

“We are putting in place, at speed, the structures that will support charities providing essential services to continue their work and in some cases to expand service provision. That includes work around the financial resilience of the sector.”

Please spare a moment to think of Havering’s elderly and most vulnerable by donating to the Justgiving page.

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