Do you ever feel like you don't fit in?
The Unity Centre is a social centre for people with a learning difficulty, their parents and Carers. With us you will find a place to feel at home, make friends and not be judged.
We opened in March 2012 and have built up a good reputation for our members to relax, meet with friends or new people and join in any activities if they wish. If you have any suggestions on new activities you would like us to put on within the Centre, we are always happy to do this, if it is possible. We have arts & Crafts, music, table top games, game consoles, chess club, karaoke, silly dances and more, as well as giving work experience and volunteering opportunities within our shop and coffee bar. The weekends are taken over by gamers as we hold trading card games like Yu-Gi-Oh, Pokemon and more. Non gamers are welcome into the Centre too at these times.
The Centre is run by Lowestoft and District Mencap volunteers. We are a stand alone, self contained charity that is a franchise of Royal Mencap Society, they don't fund us, they guide us but don't govern us. We give our time freely to support and befriend anyone who wants to be apart of Unity life. Our volunteers are a good age range so there is someone for all ages to relate to. some of our volunteers have grown and expanded their knowledge on customer service, this has lead to them gaining employment using the skills they have attained with us. We are very proud to say we have a team of 26 volunteers who enjoy being with us.
We are here to help those with learning difficulties who live alone or with parent/carers in the community. People often become isolated and lonely due to having a learning difficulty, our aim is for them to feel that they have a family environment at Unity which we are proud to say, many feel we are family to them. All vulnerable adults are welcome, whatever their situation. Parents and carers too, life can also be quite lonely and isolated for them, so we are here to let them know they are supported and have people who care about them.
There are many organizations in our community that are in place to help people with Learning difficulties. Here at the Unity Centre we aim to be here for the more able people who feel that they don’t need a lot of support but like to be around like minded people who understand their needs. We are not carers though. If a service user needs a carer, then the carer has to stay with them.
We are still an information centre and a shoulder to lean on, giving advice as best we can. If we don’t know the answer to questions we are asked, we will find out for you. We also can point you in the right direction if you want to know about other activities in our town.
We are a Stay safe Centre, where people feeling vulnerable in the community can come and be supported as well as being third party ‘Hate crime & Mate crime’ centre, this means that if anyone feels bullied or victimised for whatever reason, we can help them report it and support them through a process ranging from reporting it anonymously, to supporting them through a court case if they wish to take matters further. We can show the vulnerable that there are people who are willing to listen and help. Many people who are victims of hate/mate crime don’t realize they have been a victim, we can show them that the way they are being treated is wrong and that we can support them to stop the problem occurring.
Our Chairwoman and Vice chairman are on a committee started with the police, we meet to discuss problems with individual vulnerable adults and crimes that have been reported. We meet to discuss what is the best way forward to deal with the person(s) involved.