Two leading social care providers in the county have joined forces in a move that will “significantly enhance” their services to customers.

Vibrance and HAIL (Haringey Association for Independent Living), have today (July 11) formally merged to provide services across London and the South East on Thursday, July 11.

Although they will continue to operate under their own names, they will now support a total of more than 4,000 people with learning disabilities and mental health issues.

Paul Allen, chief executive of Vibrance, said the merger would be hugely beneficial to both charities. He said: “This is truly great news for our services users, their families and our dedicated staff.

“These are two organisations with more than 60 years’ experience between us, each bringing a wealth of skills and services of the very highest standard.

“Early on in the process, it became very obvious to senior management at both Vibrance and HAIL that this was a perfect fit for both organisations.

“HAIL brings to the table a wide range of skills, expertise and initiatives that will ensure we are stronger working together as one organisation.

“Vibrance has a long and proud history of offering the highest levels of support to people with a learning disability and mental health issues across London and the South East, and that can only be significantly enhanced by the additional skills and services that HAIL brings.”

The merged organisation will now have a total of around 600 staff.

Vibrance offers a range of community day services, low support housing, nursing and care homes, short breaks, supported employment and self-directed services.

Established in 1989, it runs its services from 23 locations across the region, including five care homes and four supported living homes for adults with a learning disability across Essex.

HAIL supports people with learning disabilities, mental health issues and autism to lead independent lives, employing 60 people with a learning disability.

Mr Allen added: “The fact that this partnership was so obviously going to be extremely beneficial to both organisations was instrumental in us pushing forward so enthusiastically.

"HAIL’s reputation and achievements, coupled with what we at Vibrance have worked so hard to achieve over the years, mean that this is a fantastically exciting opportunity that matches our aspirations.

“The core values of the two organisations are also very much aligned, with each having a culture of openness and honesty which has made this a genuinely seamless transition because there is already so much common ground between us.

“We share values which do not just sit on a page or on a website, but are a crucial part of what we do at a senior level and throughout our services.

“It seems very apt to be making this hugely positive move during Vibrance’s 30th birthday year, which is making it all the more special.”