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Welsh Government pledge support for older homeowners

Monday 04 June 2018

Wales' Housing and Regeneration Minister has announced nearly £6 million of Welsh Government funding will be awarded to Care & Repair agencies to support vulnerable older people living independently.

Care & Repair agencies work in every part of Wales and provide essential services to help older people live as independently as possible in their own homes. As well as delivering small adaptations to properties, agencies also provide free home visits to help keep residents safe and warm, and protect their health and well-being.

The £6 million investment will be divided among care services, with £2 million being given to the Rapid Response Adaptations Programme, which provides immediate support to help prevent many people from having to be admitted to hospital and enable those who are in hospital to be discharged earlier - helping to alleviate pressure on the NHS. Estimates show that every pound invested in the programme creates a significant £7.50 saving for health and social services.

There are currently 13 Care and Repair agencies in Wales whose responsibilities cover every local authority area. Last year Care and Repair agencies helped more than 40,000 older people in Wales, by carrying out over £11.5 million of repairs, helping more than 22,000 with safety and falls-prevention work, and undertaking some 17,000 smaller adaptations.

Minister for Housing and Regeneration, Rebecca Evans AM, said: “Housing adaptations play an important role in helping many older and disabled people live safely and independently. As well as improving their lives, it reduces pressure on frontline health and social care services. The services provided by Care and Repair agencies help people to live longer at home with more confidence and dignity, and with an improved quality of life. This funding will enable agencies to provide valuable support at the heart of the communities they serve, working closely with partners in Health, Social Care, Housing and the rest of the third sector.”

Minister for Communities and Tackling Poverty, Lesley Griffiths AM, commented: “Care and Repair and the Rapid Response Adaptations Programme help transform the lives of more than 40,000 older people across Wales every year. By providing relatively small home adaptations, these services enable people to continue to live safely in the homes they love with the dignity they deserve.

“As people across Wales live longer, healthier lives, such preventative measures play an increasingly important role in supporting our health and social services. Recognising this, we have worked hard to protect the Care and Repair budget as much as possible, in spite of the £1.4 billion cuts. While it is, of course, necessary for all our programmes to make efficiency savings in the current financial climate, I’m proud the £6 million announced today will ensure many older people across Wales can retain their independence.”