Wonderful Ravenswood Village
Andrew arrived at Ravenswood Village when he was 9 years old, in November 1994, attending the Annie Lawson School.
The Educational Psychologist at Brent was the one who recommended 52 week residential care for Andrew, to use his words “we would have time to love Andrew instead of being a 24 hour carer”. We had found it impossible to cope at home.
After several visits with Andrew to the school and home, Andrew moved in. Thanks to an excellent transition programme Andrew immediately began to relax and make himself at home. It was very important for Andrew to be in a Jewish environment.
So, what has the last 26 years been for Andrew and us?
Ravenswood Village and the amazing staff have given Andrew a quality of life he never would have experienced. It has not been all “plain sailing”, but Ravenswood have always been there to support Andrew and us.
Up until now we have had peace of mind, knowing Andrew was happy. Although he is non-verbal, his challenging behaviour tells us when he is upset/unsettled. Andrew can walk around the Village in safety, has regularly car rides and (pre-Covid) visiting National Trust properties, etc., visit the Coffee Shop etc. Pre-Covid he had a very structured and full time-table.
• Andrew’s Barmitzvah – held in the Synagogue at Ravenswood Village, a very special adapted service. Everyone who was involved in Andrew’s life was invited. Three friends were the choir, our Rabbi, Steven Katz, came down to take the service. As Andrew is non-verbal, we had recorded the blessings on a tape-machine (pre-phones) and Andrew had to turn the tape on and off. He also had to open the Ark.
To make sure he was a calm as possible, he arrived at the Synagogue on horseback.
This was followed by a wonderful reception in the Hall.
Instead of everyone buying individual presents, we collected together and bought a horse for the Village. Jazz Garfield arrived and although now in retirement he is still in the Village!
• Andrew being presented to Princess Anne 24th February, 2011
• Horse and carriage riding
• Side-by-side Bike – Andrew would not be safe riding outside the Village
• Music Therapy – now stopped
• Music by Rob – about to start again after Covid
• Reflexology – again about to restart
• Excellent GP service
• Excellent regular visits by the chiropodist.
• Village Fairs/Fun Days – Andrew’s brother, sister-in-law, nephew and niece absolutely love coming down to the Village for Fun Days, a wonderful opportunity for families to get together.
Ravenswood Village is a very special place, which is a shining example of first-class care. We sincerely hope that they will be able to continue their amazing work.
Brenda and Alfred
Ravenswood Village is currently under consultation with the possibility of closure. Please show your support for our families and friends to keep their home by signing the petition below. These are vulnerable people who deserve to continue to live where they feel happy, loved and safe.