Centre’s name change reflects help it gives

Occupational therapist Juliette Kite with Taliya Anyia-Dawkins, eight, from Gosport Picture: Ian Hargreaves (151638-2)
Occupational therapist Juliette Kite with Taliya Anyia-Dawkins, eight, from Gosport Picture: Ian Hargreaves (151638-2)
QA Hospital. Picture: Will Caddy

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IT PROVIDES prosthetic limbs and supporting services to thousands of people across the south – and to celebrate its work a centre has changed its name.

The Disablement Services Centre, in St Mary’s Community Health Campus, Milton Road, Portsmouth, is one of only 40 such centres across the UK.

But it will now be known as the Portsmouth Enablement Centre – a change which has been asked for by the users of the service.

Chantel Ostler, amputee specialist physiotherapist at the centre, said: ‘This is something which our users felt strongly about.

‘We want our name to reflect our philosophy here, and our focus is firmly on enablement, and empowering people.’

As part of its relaunch, the centre opened its doors to users and members of the public, who had the chance to take a look around and see what help and support is provided.

Special guests Alan Knight from Portsmouth Football Club, Ray Westbrook from England Amputee Football Association and Ursula Ward, chief executive of Portsmouth Hospitals NHS Trust, which runs the centre, were there.

Each year the centre sees about 1,600 patients each year, including adults and children.

Among those who have been supported by the centre is eight-year-old Taliya Anyia-Dawkins, who was born without her left hand.

Taliya, from Gosport, now has a prosthetic hand, which means she can cartwheel and do handstands.

Mum Sabrina, 31, a beautician, said: ‘She loves gymnastics and she’s good at it.

‘She’s now taking up athletics.

‘It’s lovely to see her enjoying herself and being so active. It’s not always easy for Taliya, but she finds a way to do most of the things which everyone else does.

‘We’re lucky that we live so close to the enablement centre.

‘They have been good with Taliya and thinking of her needs. It has built up her confidence a lot and I am really proud of her.’