Improving The Lives of Disabled People
The Early Days
It all began when a group of local people were inspired to form the “Chester and District Committee for the Disabled” to acknowledge the “United Nations International Year for Disabled Persons” in 1981. The Committee had a vision that one day they could provide disabled people with a centre of their own that could cater for their needs. The Dial House Disability Rights Centre and Community Cafe opened its doors to the public as a charity in May 1986, to provide a central point for disabled and elderly people to meet socially and to provide information about support and other allowances or equipment available to help them.
The founder of the Chester and District Committee for the Disabled, Derek Washington, sadly died before the vision became a reality. He did not, however, die in vain since thirty years on, Dial West Cheshire has developed into a thriving, user-led organisation and principal point of contact for thousands of disabled people and older people (and their families and carers) who benefit from the charity’s valuable services every year.
Dial West Cheshire formed as a company limited by guarantee in 2014 and today continues as a registered charity, providing award winning services for disabled people including:
Advice and Information – With a focus on welfare benefits and disability rights.
Community Cafe – The Washington Room, named after our founder, serving healthy, home-cooked food at competitive prices.
Shopmobility – Situated in Chester and Ellesmere Port, offering daily hire of mobility scooters and wheelchairs enabling access to city centre shops and facilities (as well as the sale, servicing and repair of mobility equipment and independent living aids).
Volunteering – Developing people from the community to help others within the community with extensive opportunities for training and development Dial West Cheshire’s services are primarily delivered by volunteers, supported by a small team of paid staff. We encourage people with disabilities and health conditions to work with us. (Approximately 70% of our workforce has a disability or long term health condition).
Access Group – The aim of the West Cheshire Group is to improve access to services and facilities in West Cheshire so that disabled people can participate equally in the community.