Business as usual at Rushden charity Serve

Serve's well-being centre is one of several popular services offered by the charity which is set to continue

Serve's well-being centre is one of several popular services offered by the charity which is set to continue

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A charity has reassured clients that it is not closing despite having to make redundancies.

Serve in Rushden is having to make 15 out of its 40-strong team redundant as two contracts it runs for Northamptonshire County Council end on March 31 and funding for prevention work is reduced.

People are being made redundant but we will carry on.

Alan Armson

The two contracts were for rapid response, which helps save thousands of pounds in freeing up hospital beds, and hospital aftercare services.

But despite this, the charity has reassured people that it is not closing and its homecare department, transport service, mobility shop and well-being centre are still open. Chairman of the board of trustees Alan Armson confirmed they are not closing and said: “People are being made redundant but we will carry on.”

He added: “We know our services are valued. They were valued by the county council, who are strapped for cash, and we know they are valued by the NHS.

“We are always willing to talk to both organisations about working with them in the future.”

A county council spokesman said: “As part of our standard commissioning process, organisations are invited to tender a bid for some council-funded services on a contract basis to ensure the best fit for the needs of the council going forward and the best value for money. We are looking to deliver fast response services in localities rather than using one provider to cover the whole county in order to cut down on travel time and expenses and we will be talking to Serve about how it can be involved in delivering this type of service.

“The hospital aftercare service at Northampton General Hospital has been commissioned by the hospital to a new provider, while we are in talks with Serve to explore how we can continue to work with them at Kettering General Hospital. The cabinet agreed to extend our contract with Serve for older people’s prevention services for a further nine months from April 2015 and this will remain in place until December 2015.”

One of Serve’s services set to continue is transport, which is used by 2,500 people. For details call 01933 315555.