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Petition launched to save care centres

 Kieran Kneen
Kieran Kneen Image credit: liverpoolecho.co.uk

An uncle has launched a petition to stop the proposed closure of two care centres which provides support to disabled people.

George Lamb, 28, from Bebington, Wirral, has seen how the services have helped his nephew Kieran Kneen (pictured above) over the past three years and feels it would be a great shame if they closed their doors for good.

Kieran has an undiagnosed condition, he needs to use a wheelchair and finds it difficult to communicate as well as requiring around the clock care.

Lamb told Liverpool Echo:  “He is severely disabled physically and mentally, in terms of learning. But at the day care centre he has made a good social circle with service users and staff.

“He depends heavily on it and he always looks forward to going to the centre.”

The uncle said Kieran has struggled through lockdown which has made him feel isolated whilst the Highcourt Day centre he went to in Bebington was forced to close.

He added: “Kieran always has a massive smile on his face when he goes there and we were so glad the centre opened after the lockdown finished.

“He looked forward to that so much, now we’re faced with the news it might be closing. It’s a nightmare, it would hit the family really hard.

“We’re dreading telling him he can’t go back. It’s not just about where he goes but who he is with every day. He may not see people again, they could all be sent to different centres.

“The staff know his needs and there’s a level of trust with Kieran and the family, we trust the staff members.”

Lamb went on to speak about the petition he has recently launched to save the centres.

He said:  “Although I'm his uncle, we are very close and the whole family is involved in sorting out his [Kieran’s] care.

“So I took it upon myself to set up a campaign and a petition.”

A spokesperson for Wirral Council said: “[The council] created Wirral Evolutions five years ago and the organisation is successfully supporting our most vulnerable people with learning disabilities and are a very highly-valued service provider in the borough.

“Robust internal structures have been put in place to better manage things like governance and performance.

“We are confident that the challenges they were presented with, as a result of operating costs being higher than the budget available, will be met effectively and that they will be able to realise their new delivery model without any negative impact on the quality of their services.

“The council will continue to support Wirral Evolutions in any way it can, while also closely monitoring the changes they are making so that clients and their families can be assured that the services they receive are of the highest quality and appropriate to their individual needs.”

The second care centre facing closure is based in New Brighton on Cambridge Road.