Schonfeld Square Care Home

A Message from Lord Pickles and Lord Blunkett, followed by Schonfeld Square Care Home's best practice article

The ability to listen and learn from one another has always been vital in parliament, in business and in most aspects of daily life. But at this particular moment in time, as national and global events continue to reiterate, it is uncommonly crucial that we forge new channels of communication and reinforce existing ones. The following article from Schonfeld Square Care Home is an attempt to do just that. We would welcome your thoughts on this or any other Parliamentary Review article.

Blunkett signature Rt Hon The Lord David Blunkett
Pickles signature Rt Hon The Lord Eric Pickles
THE PARLIAMENTARY REVIEW
Highlighting best practice
THE PARLIAMENTARY REVIEW
Highlighting best practice
30 | SCHONFELD SQUARE CARE HOME
Chief Executive Ita Symons
With its great architecture and splendid
landscaping, the scheme stands as a beacon
of beauty and high standards of care
Schonfeld Square is the flagship development of Agudas
Israel, a registered housing association serving the UK’s
orthodox Jewish community. While Schonfeld Square was
technically completed more than 25 years ago in 1993, CEO Ita
Symons tells
The Parliamentary Review
that their work has never
truly finished. Ita says that Agudas continues to add a diverse
variety of properties to the site, including flats, assisted living
facilities and family homes with as many as four bedrooms. She
talks about the diverse range of accommodation available at
Schonfeld Square.
Agudas Israel was formed in 1983 as a response to the housing needs of the
orthodox Jewish community which had grown around Stamford Hill following the
Second World War. The organisation originally functioned as a campaign group,
working to bring attention to the needs of our local population. As the community
developed, infrastructure needed to be constructed. This began with the opening
of a local community school and as the community grew, other basic structures
were established. As the population grew older, the need for a home for the elderly
became clear. I was employed in the organisation as an officer and I decided to
champion this cause.
The construction of Schonfeld Square
We registered with the then Housing Corporation, aiming to access their
pool of funding which was designed to support the construction of necessary
infrastructure within communities. We became a registered housing association in
FACTS ABOUT
SCHONFELD SQUARE
CARE HOME
»Chief Executive: Ita Symons
»Established in 1993
»Based in Stamford Hill, London
»Services: Residential care
home
»No. of employees: Over 150
Schonfeld Square
Care Home
31SCHONFELD SQUARE CARE HOME |
CARE
1986 and our primary reason for this
was to be able to apply for funding to
support the construction of a home
for elderly people. The need for this
was impossible to refute as our aim
was to provide a harmonious and
peaceful resource for elderly people
who had survived the Holocaust to live
out the rest of their lives. I led a huge
political campaign championing this
cause and soon we were given the
green light.
We identified a disused site in the local
area and eventually we were able to
secure a grant to clear out this site and
build a small home for 12 residents.
The Housing Corporation was not
used to the orthodox community
proclaiming their needs and so our
ability to secure this foundation was a
significant success. We constructed a
small sheltered block and, while this
was a good start, I knew we would
have to develop further. A sheltered
block would not work by itself: we
needed additional infrastructure
to handle the requirements of our
elderlyresidents.
Because of this, we designed another
adjacent home for the elderly, focusing
primarily on those who had survived
the Holocaust. Construction finished
in 1993, but we knew our work was
notcompleted.
Continual development
We have been building ever since.
Our site now comprises a sheltered
block and a nursing home, and we
purchased a large plot of land to
construct a private road. On the
other side of this road, we have built
affordable family homes with between
one and four bedrooms. This diversity
of accommodation is a key strength
and has contributed significantly to the
enormous success Schonfeld Square
has become. Rather than sequestering
away the elderly residents, they are at
the middle of a thriving community
composed of people at various stages
of life. This brings normality to their
lives and helps to keep them socially
engaged and active.
We now function as a specialist
housing association, still focusing on
our particular community and their
particular needs. We handpick all of
our staff and I personally interview
them to see the character of the
person we are taking on. In order to
work for our organisation, you must
believe in our mission statement
and share our commitment to
compassionate care. We employ staff
from a wide range of religions and
backgrounds, but it is this commitment
to compassion and kindness that is the
essential element of our staff. The beautiful gardens of
Schonfeld Square at an
evening event
To provide a
harmonious
and peaceful
resource for
elderly people
who have
survived the
Holocaust
BEST PRACTICE SPONSOR 2020
THE PARLIAMENTARY REVIEW
Highlighting best practice
30 | SCHONFELD SQUARE CARE HOME
Chief Executive Ita Symons
With its great architecture and splendid
landscaping, the scheme stands as a beacon
of beauty and high standards of care
Schonfeld Square is the flagship development of Agudas
Israel, a registered housing association serving the UK’s
orthodox Jewish community. While Schonfeld Square was
technically completed more than 25 years ago in 1993, CEO Ita
Symons tells
The Parliamentary Review
that their work has never
truly finished. Ita says that Agudas continues to add a diverse
variety of properties to the site, including flats, assisted living
facilities and family homes with as many as four bedrooms. She
talks about the diverse range of accommodation available at
Schonfeld Square.
Agudas Israel was formed in 1983 as a response to the housing needs of the
orthodox Jewish community which had grown around Stamford Hill following the
Second World War. The organisation originally functioned as a campaign group,
working to bring attention to the needs of our local population. As the community
developed, infrastructure needed to be constructed. This began with the opening
of a local community school and as the community grew, other basic structures
were established. As the population grew older, the need for a home for the elderly
became clear. I was employed in the organisation as an officer and I decided to
champion this cause.
The construction of Schonfeld Square
We registered with the then Housing Corporation, aiming to access their
pool of funding which was designed to support the construction of necessary
infrastructure within communities. We became a registered housing association in
FACTS ABOUT
SCHONFELD SQUARE
CARE HOME
»Chief Executive: Ita Symons
»Established in 1993
»Based in Stamford Hill, London
»Services: Residential care
home
»No. of employees: Over 150
Schonfeld Square
Care Home
31SCHONFELD SQUARE CARE HOME |
CARE
1986 and our primary reason for this
was to be able to apply for funding to
support the construction of a home
for elderly people. The need for this
was impossible to refute as our aim
was to provide a harmonious and
peaceful resource for elderly people
who had survived the Holocaust to live
out the rest of their lives. I led a huge
political campaign championing this
cause and soon we were given the
green light.
We identified a disused site in the local
area and eventually we were able to
secure a grant to clear out this site and
build a small home for 12 residents.
The Housing Corporation was not
used to the orthodox community
proclaiming their needs and so our
ability to secure this foundation was a
significant success. We constructed a
small sheltered block and, while this
was a good start, I knew we would
have to develop further. A sheltered
block would not work by itself: we
needed additional infrastructure
to handle the requirements of our
elderlyresidents.
Because of this, we designed another
adjacent home for the elderly, focusing
primarily on those who had survived
the Holocaust. Construction finished
in 1993, but we knew our work was
notcompleted.
Continual development
We have been building ever since.
Our site now comprises a sheltered
block and a nursing home, and we
purchased a large plot of land to
construct a private road. On the
other side of this road, we have built
affordable family homes with between
one and four bedrooms. This diversity
of accommodation is a key strength
and has contributed significantly to the
enormous success Schonfeld Square
has become. Rather than sequestering
away the elderly residents, they are at
the middle of a thriving community
composed of people at various stages
of life. This brings normality to their
lives and helps to keep them socially
engaged and active.
We now function as a specialist
housing association, still focusing on
our particular community and their
particular needs. We handpick all of
our staff and I personally interview
them to see the character of the
person we are taking on. In order to
work for our organisation, you must
believe in our mission statement
and share our commitment to
compassionate care. We employ staff
from a wide range of religions and
backgrounds, but it is this commitment
to compassion and kindness that is the
essential element of our staff. The beautiful gardens of
Schonfeld Square at an
evening event
To provide a
harmonious
and peaceful
resource for
elderly people
who have
survived the
Holocaust
THE PARLIAMENTARY REVIEW
Highlighting best practice
THE PARLIAMENTARY REVIEW
Highlighting best practice
32 | SCHONFELD SQUARE CARE HOME
Kindness and compassion
Our community is bound together by
our deep faith in our primary goal:
to establish a scheme that would
provide kindness and compassion
and provide an opportunity for
elderly people to practise their faith.
As people get older, they often
become more religious and search for
a meaningful existence. Our home
gives people a chance to achieve
that. We have constructed all the
necessary infrastructure so they can
practise their faith, including our
beautiful synagogue which is the life
of our community. Prayers are held
three times a day and much of the
community, regardless of age, comes
together in this remarkable space.
Alongside the synagogue, there are
also places for study and lounges for
activities, as well as every resident
having their own flat. Those that
struggle to use the facilities are placed
in accommodation which suits them,
with many having en-suite bathrooms
to ensure dignity, privacy and comfort.
Maintaining our standards
Our primary challenge is to maintain
the high standards that we aimed
for when we first established the
scheme. We must always remember
and conserve the altruism and fervour
that led us to establish the home and
ensure we can continue to channel this
into our day-to-day operations. Key to
this is upholding our mission statement
and our aim to take care of the elderly
with respect and compassion while
allowing people to play out their
faith without being embarrassed
orchallenged.
Future expansion is looking
increasingly likely. We currently have
a waiting list for the first time in
many months and are caring for 80
people across both homes. I was not
considering expanding our site further
until we were sure there was a need,
but the waiting list proves the need
has arrived. Alongside our profile
growing, and therefore more people
from the local area wishing to enter
into our community, the exceptional
care we provide to our residents also
means they live longer. To ensure we
are still able to meet the needs of our
local population, we are planning to
expand further and continue to create
more space, giving our community the
opportunity to grow and thrive.
Our mission
statement and
our aim is to
take care of
the elderly
with respect
and
compassion
while allowing
people to play
out their faith
without being
embarrassed
or challenged
Main entrance for the
home of the elderly

This article was sponsored by Schonfeld Square Care Home. The Parliamentary Review is wholly funded by the representatives who write for it. The publication in which this article originally appeared contained the following foreword from Rt Hon Elizabeth Truss.

Rt Hon Elizabeth Truss's Foreword For The Parliamentary Review

By Rt Hon Elizabeth Truss

Even by the standards of the day –this has been one of the most exciting and unpredictable years in British politics.

The leadership election we’ve just seen marks a huge moment in our country’s history. This government is taking a decisive new direction, embracing the opportunities of Brexit and preparing our country to flourish outside the EU.

As international trade secretary, I’ll be driving forward work on the free trade agreements that are going to be a priority for the government. Free trade isn’t just an abstract concept bandied around by technocrats. It is crucial for a strong economy and for the ability of families to make ends meet. Free trade benefits people in every part of our country, as British firms export to new markets and people doing the weekly shop have access to a wider choice of goods at lower prices.

The essence of free trade is in the title: freedom. It’s about giving people the power to exchange their goods without heavy government taxation or interference. Commerce and free exchange are the engine room of prosperity and social mobility. I’m determined to tackle the forces who want to hold that back.

One of my priorities is agreeing an exciting new free trade deal with the US, building on the great relationship between our two countries and the Prime Minister and US President. But I’ll also be talking to other partners including New Zealand, Australia and fast-growing Asian markets.

And with the EU too, we want a friendly and constructive relationship, as constitutional equals, and as friends and partners in facing the challenges that lie ahead – a relationship based on a deep free trade agreement. Our country produces some of the world’s most successful exports, and the opportunity to bring these to the rest of the world should make us all excited about the future. It is this excitement, optimism and ambition which I believe will come to define this government.

For too long now, we have been told Britain isn’t big or important enough to survive outside the EU – that we have to accept a deal that reflects our reduced circumstances. I say that’s rubbish. With the right policies in place, we can be the most competitive, free-thinking, prosperous nation on Earth exporting to the world and leading in new developments like AI. To do that, we’ll give the brilliant next generation of entrepreneurs the tools they need to succeed. Since 2015, there has been a staggering 85 per cent rise in the number of businesses set up by 18 to 24 year olds – twice the level set up by the same age group in France and Germany. We’ll help them flourish by championing enterprise, cutting taxes and making regulation flexible and responsive to their needs.

As we do that, we’ll level up and unite all parts of the UK with great transport links, fibre broadband in every home and proper school funding, so everyone shares in our country’s success.

2019 has been the year of brewing economic and political revolution. 2020 will be the year when a revitalised Conservative government turbo charges the economy, boosts prospects for people across the country, and catapults Britain back to the forefront of the world stage.



Rt Hon Elizabeth Truss
Secretary of State for International Development