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Double celebration for disabled young adults

Published: 9th October 2012 18:06

Young disabled adults are having a double celebration this week, with a brand new place to learn and a more secure future for their education service.

Learners who attend the Vine education service will be joined by special guests to celebrate the official opening of their new premises.

Vine is an education service for young people aged 19 to 25 who have a variety of complex needs including physical, learning and health needs. It is provided by Leeds City Council in partnership with Leeds City College.

An official opening event is taking place on Friday 12 October to celebrate their move to new purpose built premises. Councillor Judith Blake, deputy leader of Leeds City Council and executive member for children's services will be performing a plaque unveiling. She will be joined by staff and learners from Vine and Leeds City College, as well as surprise guests from Leeds Rhinos (who might bring along their Super League Trophy!).

There will be a number of local organisations at the event holding information stalls and interactive workshops. Leeds City College catering students will be providing a buffet lunch and other refreshments.

Vine has been running for almost 35 years, originating in Meanwood Park Hospital, after a number of moves to less than suitable accommodation, the former Beckett Park Primary School was identified as a potential new home. After much work to remodel and refurbish the building, the new accommodation for Vine now includes three personal care suites, an accessible teaching kitchen, two sensory rooms, a sports hall, and six well equipped classrooms, there is plenty of outdoor space too, including a football pitch.

Councillor Judith Blake, executive board member responsible for children's services said:
"Vine provides a valuable service for some of Leeds most vulnerable young people, so it is fantastic that they have been able to move to this great new home.

"It is so important that young people with such complex needs are able to have access such great facilities and a modern, well equipped learning environment.

"We are very pleased to be joining forces with Leeds City College to enable this fantastic service to continue for years to come, and with their support, the young people will be able to achieve beyond their expectations."

As well as moving into a new home the service is also celebrating having a secure funding future after Leeds City College came on board as partners. Vine learners also benefit from the partnership by being enrolled as Leeds City College learners and all the additional support services this provides them with.

Anne-Marie Spry, Vice Principal Adult, Community and HE at Leeds City College said:
"The College is delighted that we have been able to work with Leeds City Council and Vine over the last couple of years to secure funding and support for this very vulnerable group.

"The wonderful facilities provided by Leeds City Council at Queenswood, the sustainable funding achieved and the multi-agency partnership give us a real opportunity to provide a high quality learning with support programme for young people with complex needs in the area.

"The young people and staff are working with the college to gain qualifications, with some very exciting projects underway thanks to the creativity and enthusiasm of the experienced staff team. We look forward to continuing to work together so the provision can go from strength to strength."

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