VIDEO: Disabled adults enjoy woodwork and painting at new day centre
FOR Amy Titheridge, having the opportunity to paint whatever she likes puts a big smile on her face.
She has cerebral palsy and finds it difficult to move without the aid of her wheelchair.
But yesterday, she enjoyed being out of her home and being able to use brightly coloured paints to create her own pictures.
She was among many disabled adults who attended the official opening at the new £35,000 Enabled Centre, located at New Enterprise House, in St Helen's Street, Derby.
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The centre, which has been running since before Christmas but was officially launched yesterday, has a sensory room for people to touch objects and see different colours, as well as other facilities for art activities and woodwork.
Amy's care worker said she thrives from the activities at the centre, which she visits twice a week.
Teresa Curran said Amy particularly enjoyed painting. She said: "She likes doing art work which I help her with on Monday and Wednesday mornings. On Wednesday afternoons she likes to spend time in the sensory room where she can relax."
The centre has formed through the merging of Enabled Arts and New Horizons, two organisations for disabled people which previously operated in the city, and is run by Disability Direct.
Amo Raju, chief executive of Disability Direct, said: "We essentially inherited these two organisations and took them under our wing in 2010.
"We looked for over a year to find the right place so all of the users and staff could come together.
"We want people to come here and use it is as a stepping stone. We want to be able to extend our services into the community so if the users want to go shopping or bowling, we can take them.
"A lot of people who have disabilities know no other life other than a day centre.
"It's about improving people's confidence and social interaction. The centre is user-led, they asked for a pool table so that's what we got for them."
He said the response to the centre so far has been great.
"We moved in just before Christmas and already there is a real buzz and people want to come here," he said.
"We hope in the future to be able to bring in young people and even children."
Julie Wheatley, 30, of Derby, attends the centre once a week.
She said: "I have a B12 deficiency which affects my nervous system. I can't see or hear properly and I can't feel my legs or my feet.
"I like it at the centre, rather than being stuck at home. I don't feel stupid there. Everyone makes me feel welcome and they make the effort to help me."
The centre is open Monday to Friday from 9.30pm to 4pm.