Carers ask Camden: Give us the keys for centre and let us run it ourselves

For Nalan Bedding’s sister Hanife, New Shoots is more than a drop-in centre, it is a community.

The 47-year-old suffers from cerebral palsy which has left her wheelchair bound and dependent upon carers for many of her daily needs.

Her sister says the hours she spends at the specialist learning disability centre in Shoot-Up Hill, Fortune Green, gives her the chance to be independent.

“Hanife loves the place because she is with her friends,” said Ms Bedding, 56.

“She has been going there for 20 years and has grown up with some of the other people. If Hanife didn’t have her centre I am sure she would deteriorate.”

Ms Bedding is among a group of carers who want Camden Council to hand over the keys to New Shoots so they can transform it into “The People’s Centre”.

They have drawn up a business plan to turn the council-run centre for vulnerable people into a social enterprise, which were due to be considered by the council as the Ham&High went to press last night (Wednesday, April 18).

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“It is a wonderful centre with a sensory room, hairdressing salon and a ballet room, we desperately want to save it,” said Ms Bedding.

“If they close it my life as I know it would have to stop as I would need to become my sister’s full-time carer.

“We just want a chance to take it over and protect it for the community.”