A greatly loved support worker at a Bury St Edmunds project for people with learning disabilities has left a lasting legacy with the opening of a summer house in her name.
Nora Garza worked at the Cathedral View short break service at The Vinefields for more than 10 years but sadly died from stomach cancer at the age of 59 last July.
On Saturday her family joined customers at the Leading Lives run centre to officially open ‘Nora’s Nook’ a specially adapted sensory room and summer house.
Some £4,000 has been raised in her memory towards refurbishing the summer house with a specially adapted hoist for use by people in wheelchairs, sensory lights and music as well as a decking area outside. Donations came from Nora’s friends, family and local businesses and organisations and work to get the project completed was done by The Prince’s Trust community development scheme.
Her husband Al, a civil servant at RAF Lakenheath, said: “She was so happy working at the project. She got complete satisfaction from the job and I think she was at her happiest working there. She quietly had a big impact on people’s lives.”
Al was joined by the family - sons Alonzo and Tristram and daughter Christina and her grandchildren.
Nicky Lawrence, locality manager at Leading LIves, said: “I think Nora would have loved this. She would have loved the atmosphere and tranquility the room provides.
“She was very good at doing her job but didn’t want to know about the limelight. She was just happy to be part of what was going on here. She always stepped up when we needed her to. She loved being with the customers and loved the service. She had a caring nature about her and was a big part of our service here.”
A rose has also been planted in Nora’s memory.
Leading Lives is a workers co-operative which took over services from Suffolk County Council two years ago.
Cathedral View offers an eight bedded short break service whereby people come to stay offering respite to their carers at home. Also running alongside is Elderberries, a day service for customers to drop in and enjoy facilities and support from staff. Leading Lives is a not for profit social enterprise, reinvesting profits into the community.
* A netball match is being staged by The Priors Netball team on Sunday at County Upper School at 10.30am, raising money for the Cancer Research UK and Elderberries.