Jewish charity Langdon celebrates opening new community in Borehamwood

Borehamwood Times: Langdon residents with town Mayor Clive Butchins and borough Mayor Paul Morris Langdon residents with town Mayor Clive Butchins and borough Mayor Paul Morris

The opening of new flats enabling people with learning disabilities to live independent lives brought smiles of joy from their first tenants.

The tenants, their parents, and some of the people who made the flats possible gathered yesterday at Borehamwood Synagogue to launch the supported living community run by charity Langdon.

The community gives eight young Jewish people the chance to live independently in three modern flats clustered around Elstree and Borehamwood Station.

Langdon, which started in Manchester 20 years ago and has a community in Edgware, helps its users maintain the homes, pay bills and hold down a job, enjoy a social life and establish a circle of friends.

Jonathan Kramer, 20, has been living in the flats for a couple of months. He said: “I used to live in Edgware, but I much prefer Borehamwood, there’s much more to do here. I spend my time going to the pub and cinema with my friends.

“The best thing about living with Langdon is that I’m supported but I’m not living with my family. I have my freedom.”

Sara Young, 41, enjoys living close to the shops and having good public transport links to get her into work.

She said: “I used to live by myself in Radlett, but found things lonely, here I am close to my friends.

“My flat is modern and nice; I’ve made it my own.”

Langdon Foundation chairman Barry Welck, whose son lives in a Langdon community, said: “It’s very exciting for us to be here and we’re looking forward to expanding our Borehamwood community in the next few years.

“Our young people are marrying and going on holidays. Around 80 per cent of our young people hold down either part or full-time jobs, that’s what we are about.”

Trustee Jonathan Joseph, whose daughter also lives at Langdon, said: “I have to keep pinching myself. Langdon’s expansion into Borehamwood seems like a dream.

“I don’t want to complain but having a child with learning disabilities is a big issue to cope with.

“Through giving my daughter passionate but objective care, Langdon has pushed her into achieving things we never thought possible.” 

The flats have been paid for through donations from the Maurice Wohl Foundation and the Sobell Foundation.

Mayor of Hertsmere Paul Morris, who chose Langdon as one of his two mayoral charities, said he was delighted to see the charity expand during his first six months in office.

He said: “Langdon allows each young person to exceed their aspirations and be part of the wider community.

“Hertsmere was recently chosen as the happiest place in Hertfordshire and Langdon has chosen the best place to make their mark.”

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