350-job care home developments dubbed a ‘win-win’ for Sunderland

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A MAJOR employment and construction boost that will create more than 350 jobs across the city was today welcomed as a “win-win” for Wearside.

Care company Housing 21 has announced plans to increase its Sunderland workforce from 180 to 550.

Jobs will first be created in Ford Estate, before spreading across the city to Southwick, Roker and Hendon.

Wearsiders are today being urged to apply for the positions.

Posts up for grabs are in both the care and construction sectors, and have been created to meet the increasing demand of Sunderland’s ageing population.

The company’s announcement was today welcomed by city leaders.

Councillor Graeme Miller, portfolio holder for health, housing and adult services at Sunderland City Council, said: “It’s fantastic that the extra care housing programme is not only providing new homes for older people, but also bringing with it a significant employment boost for the city.

“The creation of 350 new jobs is great news for our communities and our economy, as well as being an excellent opportunity for local people.”

The first vacancies are at Dovecote Meadow in Fordfield Road, a 175-apartment extra care scheme which is being developed in three phases.

The first residents are expected to move in from March following an official ribbon cutting ceremony last year.

Sunderland Council leader, Coun Paul Watson, whose ward will welcome the first wave of jobs, said: “This is a win-win situation for the city.

“Not only does it fulfil a need to create new housing, it also brings new jobs with it.

“This is a continuing programme which is aiming to fulfil the needs of people of a certain age in Sunderland who want a certain style of living.”

Further jobs will soon become available at the new extra care schemes in Hendon, Roker and Southwick.

Claire Charlton, locality manager for Housing 21, said: “These job opportunities are great news for local people.

“Among the new jobs we are creating are service team managers, care co-ordinators, administrators, senior care workers, care workers and domestic staff.

“We are therefore looking for people with a variety of skills and in return can offer flexible working hours, great training and development opportunities as well as career progression.”

The first two phases of the project will provide 131 self-contained one and two-bedroom apartments, as well as community space including a restaurant, hairdressing salon, care shop, wellbeing suite and convenience store.

Apartments are available either for rent or using flexible purchase options.

l Further information on the Dovecote Meadow vacancies is available from Maureen Hall on 0370 192 4420/07715 085128, email maureen.hall@housing21.co.uk, or Kasim Chaudry on 0303 123 1281/07715 085152, email kasim.chaudry@housing21.co.uk