STAFF and residents from Abbeyfield House in Merville Garden Village and Bryans House in New Mossley were among the guests at a special event to mark the merger of two leading local housing associations, Abbeyfield UK (NI) and Wesley Housing Association.
The launch event, which was attended by Social Development Minister Nelson McCausland, took place at the offices of the Belfast Harbour Commissioners.
The new organisation, Abbeyfield & Wesley Housing Association, will be responsible for a total of 321 housing units, with the potential to house over 400 residents across Northern Ireland.
Commenting on the development and what it will mean for those who reside at properties owned by both organisations, Geraldine Gilpin, Chief Executive of Abbeyfield & Wesley Housing Association said: “This is an extremely exciting opportunity. The management boards of both organisations considered that pooling our resources will achieve much greater efficiencies. It will increase financial stability, build a larger staff team with a wider range of skills and knowledge, and create a stronger market presence, which in turn should result in an expansion and improvement of the services which are currently provided to older people.”
She added: “Our residents should not notice any changes to the service provided, other than improvements which may come from the strengths and advantages gained from the merger.”
Abbeyfield & Wesley Housing Association provides a total of 24 supported sheltered housing units in Ballyclare, Monkstown and Merville, as well as 36 flats for older people in New Mossley.