A day opportunities centre for young people and adults with learning difficulties has relocated into new, purpose-built premises in Limavady following an almost £300,000 investment supported by Ulster Bank, creating two full-time equivalent jobs.
Moving On Up! was established in 2014 by Angela McDonald in response to a growing need in the area for a service for young adults with Special Educational Needs (SEN) when they finished mainstream education.
It started out with just one student, but the unique proposition of Moving On Up! quickly attracted attention from the wider community.
Angela explained: “We’re passionate about providing our students with the everyday experiences you or I have, equipping them with the skills and knowledge they need for independent living. As our spaces began to fill up, we realised that to create the best possible environment for the students we needed to start from the ground up. We acquired the plot and secured the planning permission for its development. We were fortunate also to have a team in Mark Johnston, who provided us with expert financial guidance, and Rhonda at Ulster Bank, who showed real passion for our work, to make it a reality.”
With a funding package supported by Ulster Bank, Moving On Up! invested in the development situated on a four-acre plot.
“We have 17 students with us now and our new premises offers room for future expansion,” Angela added.
Rhonda McClelland, Business Development Manager at Ulster Bank, continued: “Angela and her team take a holistic approach to their work, catering for both the students and families in their care. It’s a valuable service that delivers many benefits to the wider community and one that we at Ulster Bank are very pleased to support with this investment. The new premises will provide Moving On Up! with the facilities it needs today and the capacity to expand on its proposition in the future.”
Angela concluded: “Ours is a day opportunities centre focused on social inclusion and cohesion, nurturing confidence and independence by assisting our students to develop normal life skills such as money management, shopping and cooking.”