One of Scotland's leading housing and care providers has unveiled its new Tayside office as part of its five year Business Plan.
Blackwood, which also has offices in Edinburgh, Glasgow, Aberdeen and Stirling, sees the launch of its new premises as a pivotal step to provide its service users with enhanced care and housing.
The landlord of the workplace, John Robertson, attended the opening and had the honour of cutting the ribbon alongside Councillor Ken Lynn to declare the office officially open.
To celebrate the official launch, the innovative organisation built a scale replica of its highly accessible concept house for people with disability and mobility issues to showcase on the day. Six model homes are scheduled to be built in Dundee in early 2016/17.
The concept house took centre stage in the office's new meeting room where Blackwood's Strategic Director, Simon Fitzpatrick, talked through the various innovative designs and inventions that have been created.
The Concept Home sets a new standard of accessible homes and combines technology, modern construction and engagement with people who live with a disability. It aims to be beautiful, easy to live in, and will meet customers' changing needs.
Also on show was the cutting edge technology driven care service, Clever Cogs. Head of Innovation, Colin Foskett, gave a live demo of how the system works and the benefits it brings to customers by providing safety and independence in their own home.
Councillor Ken Lynn was particularly impressed with the inspiring work that is being done to promote independence for people with disabilities, particularly through the new Clever Cogs care system and Blackwood's approach to digital inclusion.
The expansion to Dundee represents a significant investment by the housing and care provider and will create a number of new jobs in the local area.
The development comes as part of Blackwood's five year Business Plan and the new Tayside office's main focus will be to grow its Care at Home business using its own branded smart technology to help those with disabilities live their lives to the full.
Since it was launched 40 years ago, Blackwood has built an impressive reputation for its expertise in adapting properties to let people with disabilities, sensory impairments and age-related conditions to live as independently as possible.
Fanchea Kelly, Chief Executive at Blackwood, said:
"We always strive to be at the forefront of the latest innovations and technologies, and expanding in Dundee will allow us to continue to improve and enhance the lives of those we work with.
"The official opening went very well and we are extremely grateful to Councillor Ken Lynn for coming along to cut the ribbon.
"People are at the heart of what we do, and it's only with the dedication of our own team that we can deliver value and quality to our customers – so having the opportunity to create jobs is particularly exciting for us.
"This investment is also particularly important to us as Dundee is the location where we will be launching our highly accessible concept house next year, so having a dedicated team in this city is essential to this and other future pioneering projects.
"We very much pride ourselves on being at the forefront of the housing and care sector, but to remain there it's vital that we continue to grow and develop in order to listen to the ever evolving needs of our service-users and help shape our future."
John Robertson, Landlord at Struan Motors Ltd who is letting the premises to Blackwood, said:
"Struans recognise that Blackwood adds real value to many individuals and the community through the services it provides.
"It's the work of Blackwood, delivered with professionalism and friendliness, which often provides the platform for individual progress and leads to a better community.
"Struans are delighted and proud that Blackwood has taken occupation of our office in Dundee and we wish them a very successful future."
Another crucial element in delivering change will see the charity expanding its services and footprint in Dundee, Edinburgh and Glasgow as key cities to boost its five-star rated care services.