Founders, Johann van Zyl and Dara Ní Ghadhra’s aim was to fill the void in adult social care by providing a safe place for adults of all ages with challenging behaviours associated with complex neurological conditions and a mental health diagnosis. They embarked on their journey with business partners, Ignite Growth, who believed in their vision and supported them financially in a buy and build program to create a 350-bed company.
In the early days Cornerstone operated 150 beds in the Southeast of England and has since grown to 204 by adding a new service in Surrey. With another two services under construction in Somerset and Bristol that are due to open next year, the group’s total bed numbers will hit 358.
A number of industry leaders recognised Cornerstone’s high quality care provision and amongst others, the organisation was two years consecutively named Best Complex Care Provider of the Year by HealthInvestors magazine and twice awarded Alantra’s Best Neurobehavioral Specialist in the Country title.
“We started this company to make a difference to a sector that needed the expertise to deal with vulnerable people with complex needs and I believe we have made a difference,” said Johann van Zyl, CEO of Cornerstone Healthcare. “We have reached this milestone thanks to fantastic, hardworking and loyal staff”, Van Zyl continued.
Dara Ní Ghadhra, the Group’s Chief Operating Officer, added: “Although Cornerstone Healthcare has expanded over the four years, we have remained true to our company vision, to deliver the best care possible to our residents and provide the best quality training to our teams. We have a duty to the relatives that entrusted us with their loved ones to be the best”.
As part of the celebrations, Cornerstone Healthcare has donated 160 meals, prepared by the Harbour Hotel in Southampton, to the Society of St James who support people that are experiencing homelessness, problematic substance use and mental health problems.
All Cornerstone staff were recognised with a £100 shopping voucher as a special thank you.