BCOP is a Charitable organisation dedicated to improving the quality of life for older people.
BCOP was originally founded in May 1946 as the Birmingham Development Council for Old Peoples Welfare. Early in 1947, the name was simplified to Birmingham Council for Old People, until the present day when the organisation is simply known as BCOP, registered as Broadening Choices for Older People.
In its early days, BCOP had been actively involved in the raising of funds to benefit older people, initially in the form of accommodation and care, expanding its latter day operations into Day Centres, Sheltered Housing and Nursing Homes.
Throughout its History, BCOP has recognised the need to ensure that maximum available resources are directed to those most in need. This ethos is enshrined into its objectives.
The History of BCOP
The history of BCOP stretches back more than 50 years to the time when Birmingham was recovering from the effects of the Second World War. Nationally, Britain was also embarking on a period of industrial and economic growth. Social change was also in the air with the establishment of the New National Health Service. Birmingham was also changing rapidly, as factories that had contributed to the war effort switched production to peacetime activities. At the same time, the city council drew up plans for a massive programme of slum clearances and new housing development.
Amidst all this change, a group of leading social workers were becoming increasingly concerned at the plight of Birmingham's old people, many of whom were living in sub-standard housing. On May 30 1946 they established the Birmingham Development Council for Old People's Welfare - the forerunner of BCOP. The organisation recruited a number of lady volunteers from the team who had run the forces' canteen at Birmingham's Council House during the war. They also persuaded Alderman Alan Giles, the Lord Mayor elect, to take the office of president and launch an appeal for funds.
A year later the organisation's name was changed to the Birmingham Council for Old People (BCOP) and it took over the management of two residential homes: Elizabeth Hadley House in Selly Park and Calthorpe House in Perry Barr. By 1953, BCOP had brought five more properties and in 1955 it opened the UK's first day centre for old people at Bartley Green. Over the next decade it continued to make the phrase 'a room of one's own' a reality for many elderly people, providing a wide range of flats and bungalows, all with modern facilities such as fitted kitchens and central heating.
BCOP's activities at this time included organising package holidays, which provided a relief from boredom and loneliness for up to 3,000 old people every year. Other services included chiropody and meals on wheels. In 1970, the organisation opened Birmingham's first purpose-built sheltered housing scheme at Harvey Court. This was followed by others elsewhere in the city where older people could live independently, safe in the knowledge that the resident warden would provide help or advice if they needed it. The 1980's saw the construction of a new nursing home - Robert Harvey House - built at a cost of Â£1.4 million in Handsworth Wood. Shortly afterwards, work began on a Â£2.5 million project to rebuild Neville Williams house in Selly Park, providing a brand new nursing home.
In 1999, BCOP changed its name to reflect the nature of its work, and is now known as Broadening Choices for Older People.
At the beginning of the 21st century, the demand for BCOP's services is as high as ever, and it continues to fulfil a unique role, complementing but not duplicating the work of local authorities and social services.
We provide a variety of services including:
•Self contained bungalows & flats
•Sheltered housing schemes
•Residential care and nursing homes
•Extra care housing
•Financial assistance and advice
•Handy person service
•Dementia care services
BCOP Care Services
BCOP provides a range of high quality care services aimed at meeting the needs of frail and vulnerable older people, at our well designed, modern, residential and nursing care homes. We achieve this by focussing on the needs of the individual, having a well-motivated and trained workforce, and creating as homely and non-institutional living environment as possible. We pride ourselves on placing the needs of individuals at the heart of our services, and emphasise the importance of involving residents and their families in the home.
We have a great deal of experience in developing new and innovative services to meet the ever-changing needs of older people, particularly those with dementia and mental health needs.
We also have an established quality management system that stresses the importance of continually striving to improve what we do.
BCOP Housing Services
BCOP deliver a very wide range of housing, care, and support services for older people. Our Housing Services Manager and team concentrate on housing options for older people who may need some support and help but are still able to lead a reasonably independent life.
Our housing consists of the following:
Living independently is ideal for older people who are physically fit and able to cope with running a home of their own. However, it is not always easy to find a suitable flat or bungalow on the open market, especially for those on a tight budget.
BCOP manages housing schemes in Birmingham that are purpose-built for older people. Homes are let at affordable rents. BCOP rents are eligible for housing benefit, and are maintained by BCOP.
Residents remain entirely independent as there is no warden or manager on site, but an alarm in each home enables them to contact the central control team in an emergency.
Designed to suit older people who do not need residential care, but are looking to move out of their present accommodation. This could be due to poor health or disability, because they want a home, which is smaller and easier to manage, or they need a little extra support and security from time to time. Sheltered housing is not suitable for people with more serious health problems, physical or mental, who need 24-hour support and nursing care.
The aims of BCOP are:
1.To provide as far as possible a home for life, if desired
2.To sustain a happy, safe and secure home
3.To offer a high standard of individual care, comfort, support and guidance in partnership with residents, their families and friends
4.To provide a stimulating home in which the residents can pursue their friendships, hobbies and interests and maintain contact with the community
Image above shows Robins Court which is one of our Sheltered Schemes situated in the Kings Heath area of Birmingham.
Extra Care Housing
Tennessee is a BCOP Sheltered Housing Scheme, which is able to offer Extra Care Services. These include assisted bathing areas, a communal kitchen to provide on site meals and home care teams based on site.
BCOP has plans to build shared ownership including extra-care housing in and around the Midlands area. For further details, please contact the Chief Executive Marcus Fellows.
In addition to constructing and managing our own property we are also actively involved in the management of property for other organisations.
We provide a comprehensive management service with a menu of options for which ever element of our services you would like us to undertake. The services we offer range from payroll for staff through to a fully managed service including estate management with a repairs and maintenance service.
We currently provide services to;
A small Birmingham based charity owning 16 rented flats for older people. A full comprehensive management service is provided by BCOP.
Wiggin Cottage Homes
An Almshouse trust who engages BCOP to provide a full service including the serving of the Trustees enabling hem to comply with current legislation.
Owning a number of Bungalows the trust employs BCOP to carry out Estate Management work.
Institute of Ageing and Health
BCOP undertakes pay rolling and accounts work for this small charity.
Image above shows Wiggin Cottage Homes.