Belfast Telegraph

Bryson Care to create 200 new home support service jobs

By Margaret Canning

Social enterprise Bryson Charitable Group is creating 200 new jobs as it launches a new home support service for older people across the province.

Bryson, which is one of Northern Ireland's most successful social enterprises, said the new One2One service would include shopping, chaperoning to appointments, befriending, light housework and meal preparation.

Bryson provides charitable services to communities, families and individuals, and currently employs around 650 people.

The firm this month revealed in its annual report that turnover had fallen 7.5% to £34.1m.

Its latest initiative is in response to the Review of Health and Social Care in Northern Ireland in 2011, which set out plans for greater community involvement in the care of older people.

The new One2One service already employs 20 staff, with 180 paid-for care roles to be filled over the next 18 months.

Around 3,500 elderly people will be helped under the scheme.

Jo Marley, director of Bryson Care, said: "Following the Review of Health and Social Care, we set about exploring the need for a private service offered by Bryson.

"We engaged with Ulster University, whose students carried out intensive research into the need for such a service. The research identified an urgent need across Northern Ireland.

"Our existing Bryson Care package offered low-level support for people in their homes, but our new package provides real support to the elderly and vulnerable in our society."

Meanwhile, parent company Bryson Charitable Group has unveiled its annual report for the year ending March 31, 2015.

The company's subsidiaries are Bryson Care, Bryson Care West, Bryson Intercultural, An Munia Tober, which supports travellers, and Bryson LaganSports, which promotes active living for people in inner cities.

The firm said it had faced a year of consolidation, with challenges from the loss of some government contracts. Turnover fell by 7.5% to £34.1m in the year to March 31.

Of its trading subsidiaries, Bryson Recycling remained the largest. Its turnover was £11.8m, which was down 7% after the shutting-down of its white goods refurb programme and a fall in global commodity prices. Recycling recorded an operating profit of £102,000 - but provision for contract failures of £250,000 brought losses of £148,000.

The Bryson Care arm of the firm had turnover of £3.59m.

Belfast Telegraph