Rory Stewart MP joined staff, supporters and beneficiaries on Friday at the 30th Anniversary celebrations of Eden Mencap Society (EMS), celebrating the important local service that began in 1986. The birthday party took place at their premises in Duke Street, Penrith, which has provided the local charity with vital extra space to support its users since moving there in January 2015.

​Rory Stewart MP said: “It is wonderful to celebrate another birthday with EMS, having celebrated them on their 25th Anniversary five years ago. They should be rightly proud of their local knowledge and passion, which enables them to best serve their members, and tailor their support in only a way that small, local charities can do. Jacqui and her staff, as I have said many times before, are clearly incredibly dedicated, placing every emphasis on the people they support. It is always a real pleasure to visit them, and to see such a well-run charity in action.”

Jacqui Taylor, Chief Officer of EMS, said: “We have come a long way since those early days of providing support to a few children with learning disabilities. The range of services we provide today, our standard of operations and the number of staff we have, has expanded along with the quantity of people we support. It is good to know that our passion and commitment has allowed us to overcome a range of challenges over the years. While we are proud of our historical achievements we are looking forward to improving on them in the future.Our focus since moving in was on raising the funds to upgrade the facilities to meet the more specialist needs of some of our clients. However, it became evident that unless we owned the property or had a much longer lease on the building, applying for grants was harder and in some cases impossible.”

This has led E​MS​ Board of Trustees to announce that to celebrate the Society’s 30th Anniversary a campaign to ‘Help Us Buy Our Home’ is to be launched. The goal is to plan activities to mark the anniversary on the 30th of each month, or in the case of February, on the 29th.

Jennie Sutton, Chair of the Board of Trustees, enthused​:​ “This is a very special year for us and we hope that our plans inspire the local community and groups to support our worthy campaign. If we can achieve our goal, it will put us in a stronger position to obtain the additional funding we need to transfer Ul​l​swater House into a modern facility. This will ensure that the Society will be able to continue to provide excellent support for many more years to come.”PR1

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