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Aster Group plans merger with Disability charity Enham Trust

Housing association Aster Group have announced that Hampshire-based disability charity, Enham Trust is set to join its Group, subject to consultation and final approval in the autumn.

Enham Trust is a disability charity that supports disabled people to live, work and enjoy life to the full, with the belief that disability should not act as a barrier. While primarily based in Andover, Hampshire, it provides services across a wider geography including Somerset, Wiltshire and Plymouth.

The move into Aster Group would help to secure the long-term future of Enham Trust, which was founded in 1921. Being part of the larger Group would mean it could take advantage of Aster’s strong and stable financial position, its expertise in customer services, care and social impact, and the Groups’ investment programme. The Trust’s offer would also complement the Aster Foundation charity’s mission of enabling better lives for local communities.

Aster has enjoyed a strong working relationship with Enham Trust over a number of years, partnering with the organisation to break down barriers concerning disability and mental health. The partnership has seen Aster employees fundraising and volunteering for the charity, and the Trust has helped guide Aster to reach its ‘Disability Confident Leader’ status.

As well as its core business, Aster Group is also home to Dorset-based East Boro Housing Trust and London-based C&C, both of which provide housing and support to older and vulnerable people.

Aster Group CEO, Bjorn Howard, said: “The decision we have taken is about doing the right thing in challenging times. By working together, Enham Trust could draw on the larger resources and expertise of our Group, helping to ensure it could provide high quality housing and care services across its communities into the future.

“Enham Trust is driven by its belief that disabled people deserve to live full and happy lives and that their disability should not act as a barrier. With the support we are committed to providing Enham, I’m confident that this amazing charity would continue to thrive long into the future, as part of Aster Group.

“Aster, EBHT, C&C and Enham Trust all share a strong social purpose that make our group’s activities crucial to the communities we serve.”

Enham Trust owns 300+ homes including those for social rent, supported living and residential care services. They also offer a range of non-housing-based services that promote independence, including care at home, supported employment, education and training opportunities, and direct payments services, supporting well over 7,000 disabled people every year.

Enham Trust CEO, Simon Williams, said: “We’re excited that we are set to join Aster Group, the merger being proposed will mean we can do even more for our current and future residents and service users.

“Aster are as passionate about Enham’s work as we are. They have a strong sense of social purpose and are committed to the long-term delivery of Enham’s purpose, supporting disabled people to live, work and enjoy life.”

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