Charity announces new name and a £5m investment programme for 140th birthday
A Northern Ireland charity for disabled people has announced a rebrand and five-year, £5m investment programme.
The Northern Ireland Institute for the Disabled (NIID) was founded in 1878 as The Cripples' Institute.
As it marks its 140th anniversary, the charity is rebranding as HarmonI.
Before it moved to Bangor, the organisation was based on Belfast's Donegall Road.
It now operates an independent living facility at Stricklands Care Village in the seaside town, and a men's homeless hostel at Utility Street in the city.
As part of the investment programme, HarmonI plans to add 40 new living spaces for supported independent living at Stricklands.
Chief executive officer Sam Humphries said work was already under way on the development programme for the five-acre site in Bangor, with the project involving transforming a former nursing home wing with 16 en suite rooms into eight flats for supported independent living.
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Mr Humphries added: "Our board of trustees is excited at the prospect of being able to build on our 140-year history of providing high-quality care and excellence in the delivery of our services with the creation of purpose-built facilities which are designed around the needs of our residents and staff.
"The entire capital investment is geared towards doing more for more, because we know there are many people in need in our community, and it is our goal to be available to help them meet their supported independent living needs.
"HarmonI is humbled and privileged to provide care and support for a diverse range of people, each person with individual needs."
The charity announced four years ago that it would be closing its Stewart Memorial care home in Bangor.