National centre for reminiscence arts and dementia intervention Age Exchange has merged with health and social care charity, Community Integrated Care.
Age Exchange has become a subsidiary of Community Integrated Care under the merger, retaining its own identity, board of Trustees and governance agreements. There will also be no changes in terms of staffing or organisational structure at either organisation, and services at Age Exchange in Blackheath centre will remain the same.
The merger arose following an internal review of Age Exchange’s sustainability in 2016/17, which revealed an opportunity to extend the reach and impact of its services by partnering with a national social care charity. Community Integrated Care was selected for its national infrastructure and specialist dementia services.
Through the partnership, Age Exchange expects to benefit from Community Integrated Care’s infrastructure to grow its organisation and increase its reach, while it will help Community Integrated Care latter to elevate its existing dementia services and expand its offering to include Age Exchange’s reminiscence and dementia services to the people it supports.
Community Integrated Care currently supports over 3,500 people with a range of support needs including learning disabilities, mental health concerns, autism, dementia and age-related needs. The north-west based charity employs over 5,500 staff throughout England and Scotland.
Age Exchange supports hundreds of people every week through outreach projects in the community and a hub in Blackheath. Each year Age Exchanges centre in Blackheath is visited by 180,000 people. The charity is run by 16 staff and over 100 volunteers.
Rebecca Packwood, Age Exchange Chief Executive said:
“We set out to find a national partner that provided both the infrastructure we needed to grow and synergy in terms of values and ambition – Community Integrated Care was the perfect candidate. This partnership will allow us to replicate the work we do in our Blackheath centre across the UK, dramatically increasing the number of beneficiaries we are able to reach.
“Community Integrated Care will benefit from our expertise in Reminiscence Arts, allowing it to further develop its award-winning dementia services using Age Exchange’s impactful strategies, which are the blueprint for the ambitious plans for this partnership.”
Mark Adams, Chief Executive Officer at Community Integrated Care, said:
“This represents a fantastic start to our new five-year strategy, as we begin to go back to our charitable roots, putting the people we support, our colleagues and the community at the heart of what we do.
“Having already successfully ventured into dementia and reminiscence projects to improve the lives of people we support, our partnership with Age Exchange will now allow us to further improve those projects by sharing knowledge, learning from Age Exchange’s and expanding our offer to deliver genuine social impact to communities across the country.”
The two charities were legally joined on 27 July 2018 following due diligence processes and the unanimous ratification by the Board of Trustees of both organisations.
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