A CHARITY has stepped in to help elderly and vulnerably people after they lost their homecare services when a homecare firm folded at short notice.

Carers' Resource has taken over from First to Care in Albert Street, Skipton, which had to cease its homecare side of the company due to ill health - it is continuing to provide mobility equipment.

The care provider is now looking after the former First to Care clients and has also taken on some of the staff who were facing losing their jobs.

A Carers' Resource spokeswoman said: "The notice letter included our number and resulted in an influx of calls from extremely concerned clients and their families.

"Some are elderly - in their 90s - all are vulnerable and all depend on the home care service for washing, dressing, meals, help getting up/going to bed.

"It’s been pretty smooth running and an efficient change over for clients – in fact clients have kept the same staff, they are just now employed by us."

Jackie Kingsbury, 71, of Sutton-in-Craven, whose mother-in-law 93-year-old Ellen Kingsbury, who lives in Cononley, was a client of First to Care, said: “It was such a worry for Ellen and for us as we’d got into a routine and the girls were going in and helping her four times a day.

“We’re so pleased that care @ carers’ resource acted quickly and took on these staff and their clients, meaning there is no change whatsoever to Ellen’s care."

Sam Dawson, Head of Care, care @ Carers’ Resource, said: “We went to a meeting organised by the staff affected at First to Care who were passionate about ensuring their clients continued with a service.

“They were keen to work with us to ensure continuity at a time when they were concerned about their jobs but put the welfare and wellbeing of their clients first."

Clare Metcalfe, First to Care branch manager, said the service had to be closed due to ill health but the organisation was continuing to provide mobility equipment and assistive technology products for both sale and rent.

Clients were given two weeks notice and were visited personally and relatives spoken to and offered support if they needed it along with a list of care providers.

"There was regular communication with North Yorkshire County Council and the Care Quality Commission over the two week period to ensure a smooth transition," she said.

"During the second week of the notice period all the clients had found an alternative care provider and had a plan in place. All the staff have found alternative employment."

*Carers' Resource care team is expanding and vacancies are on offer for support workers. For information visit: http://care.carersresource.org or telephone: 01274 588990 or email: care@carersresource.org