A charity which helps transform the lives of people with serious health conditions has opened the doors to its state-of-the-art new centre.
Reach for Health provides physiotherapeutic exercise for those who have experienced a traumatic health event such as a heart attack or stroke, as well as people suffering from a long-term or life-long illness.
The new Reach for Health Centre is more than twice the size of the charity’s former home, allowing it to increase the range of services it offers and help even more people.
It has been built at the Daventry & District Sports Club site at Western Avenue in a £1.48million project funded by Daventry District Council (DDC).
The new centre opened this week with an appointment based system, social distancing and comprehensive Covid-19 measures in place to keep visitors safe.
From Thursday 5 November only members who have been referred by their GP, or other NHS professional, with a defined long-term illness will be able to attend the centre with numbers limited to a maximum of 15 participants at any one time, in line with Government guidance.
These arrangements will allow the Centre to continue to help those in need of rehabilitation during the national lockdown, and have been put in place with the assistance and guidance of Dr Matthew Davies GP of Daventry’s Abbey House Medical Practice.
Rob Juson, Chair of Trustees at Reach for Health, said: “We're delighted to open the new centre. We first started talking about it in February 2016 so it’s been a long haul, but we got there and it’s been fantastic to welcome our members to the new building this week.
“We have gained so much space. The new building is light, airy, fully-accessible and it flows superbly, meaning we have been able to lay out the equipment in a way that allows members to socially distance. Around 95% of our clients are referred from the NHS, and we are already receiving referrals to help people with Covid-19 resilience, so the completion of the new centre has come at a crucial time for the community.
“While our excitement is tinged with some disappointment due to the second lockdown coming into force this Thursday, we fully understand that this is happening to protect us and the NHS. As we are an exercise-based health rehabilitation centre and not a regular gym, we are pleased to be able to open on a limited basis and we will continue to accept qualifying referrals from healthcare professionals during this period of further restrictions.”
Reach for Health typically receives about 2,400 visits a month from people in need of physical and mental rehabilitation, most of whom have been referred by a GP or hospital consultant.
But its former premises in High March were old and expensive to maintain, and the limited space meant the charity was struggling to cope with an increased demand on its services.
DDC agreed funding for the new centre in February 2019, with work on site getting underway in January this year. The project, carried out by Paragon Space on behalf of DDC, has also seen the car park at the Sports Club reconstructed and resurfaced.
Councillor Alan Hills, Community, Culture and Leisure Portfolio Holder at DDC, added: “This is a project which I have supported for some time, so it’s wonderful to see it come to fruition.
“Reach for Health provide a great service to help improve the lives of people with a range of serious health conditions, and the investment in this new centre will bring enormous benefit to Daventry and the surrounding District for many years to come.
“It has also provided an opportunity to improve the car park at the Sports Club for the benefit of all its users, and that is another really positive outcome for the community.”
Find out more about Reach for Health