Katie's Diary

New Beginnings

11th July 2014

GREAT start to our summer with two new openings on the north west coast, it was a fantastically sunny day as we welcomed some new people to ubu and met up with some old friends for the grand openings of another new uStep model of support.

The Mayors of both Fleetwood and St Annes welcomed uStep to the towns and said they were delighted that they would make such a difference to so many people.

Coun Ed Nash in St Annes said ubu was a pioneering company that made best practice.  While Coun Ron Shewan in Fleetwood said he was thrilled that new life had been breathed into the town centre putting some of the town’s most vulnerable adults at its heart to give them the chance of a new start.


Ayla Shearer is a talented artist who has recently left hospital and is eager to start a new independent life.  A talented artist she has plans to get back to work and is hoping to hire a studio so she can create some sculptures and paintings.

“uStep will act as a springboard for my confidence and give me a sense of well being that I need,” she said showing us round her new apartment.

“I am an artist but have not had the space or opportunity to develop my skills so I am looking forward to doing that and working on building a business from it,” she added.

“I am looking forward to socialising, shopping and getting out and about in St Anne’s where I have lived a lot of my life.”

Dorothy Jarvis Lee, Chief Executive of ubu, said that she was delighted that already Ayla had made plans for her future.

“We are a transformational organisation that places the people we support at the heart of their own care.  They know best what they want to become and it is our role to help them get there.

“uStep is pioneering because it was one of the first to place consumers at the heart of their own care but more importantly it is constantly evolving as the needs of our consumers and society change and make different demands upon us.

“It is fantastic that Ayla already has some firm ideas about how she would like to live her life.  That is the way it should be for her and for all vulnerable adults. Our ethos is treat a person as they could be not as they are then they will become what they should be.” 


Coun Shewan spoke from the heart when he said he knew how important uStep was to the people we serve.

His own brother, Peter, had learning difficulties but 50 years ago had little support.  “It was tough for my mother who had to care for him.  When she died it was very hard for Peter because there was no one like ubu to step in and help him,” he said.

“This site used to be a boys club so it has already helped a lot of people find the right start in life with training for sport and skills so it is brilliant to see it being redeveloped like this by ubu.

“My wife knows one of the first consumers, Lynne, and it was great to be able to hear her plans for creating an independent lifestyle here in Fleetwood.  She told us she plans to start dog walking and has other ideas about getting out and about in the community,” he added.

“That is how all our citizens should be treated and helped.  I applaud the ubu approach of putting people at the heart of their own development so they achieve an independent lifestyle.

”Coun Ed Nash is the Mayor of St Annes and he and his wife opened the new uStep there.  Already three people are set to move in with some very clear plans for their futures.

“This uStep is fantastic because it has put people who need support right at the heart of their local community.  With backing from ubu they will be able to forge independent lives and I have already heard some ambitious plans for new businesses and joining in with their near neighbours.

“I work with veterans who suffer terribly with mental health problems Confidence is a key factor in their rehabilitation. I am delighted that ubu support people and help them build independent lives by instilling them with the confidence to believe they can be what they want to be, not what society might think they should be.

“It really is pioneering care and proves how ubu makes best practice and doesn’t just follow it,” he added.

ubu has been working in the North of England for more than 30 years and is delighted to welcome new people to the ubu family.  We care for more than 500 people and with our unique approach have helped many of our consumers achieve greater independence at the heart of their own communities.

Our transformational care model is constantly evolving to embrace best practice.

Read on to find out how we are making a very real difference to some of our new consumers.

New Beginnings

 I decide what matters to me. ubu help and teach me to make my future happen 

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