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Mushkil Aasaan – ‘making the difficult easier’ – is a local charity that has for 25 years provided a specialist home care service. It was initially built for the needs of Tooting’s diverse and multicultural community, but has over time cared for 6,500 families across Wandsworth.

Now this risks being lost, with the council withdrawing specialist services and Mushkil Aasaan’s bid for the new type of contract rejected.

Mushkil Action has formed to campaign for Wandsworth Council to reconsider its decision and recognise:

  1. The importance of a specialist home care service tailored to meet the person-centred needs of Wandsworth’s large multicultural community
  2. The particular value of Mushkil Aasaan as an experienced and high quality provider of care to that community

Wandsworth Council must change its approach and let a new contract for specialist care in Tooting, giving Mushkil Aasaan a fair chance to continue its crucial work.

Background:

Mushkil Aasaan is no ordinary care provider. It was founded by a group of women worried about the plight of families and individuals experiencing crisis, social exclusion and a complex range of unmet needs. It nurtures a workforce of around 100 people, many of them local who were previously unemployed. It builds and sustains relationships of care and empathy with some of the most isolated and vulnerable members of our community.

Unlike generic care providers Mushkil has a detailed knowledge of the diverse community’s faiths, values, customs, languages and cultures. This adds huge value to the care it can give, particularly to people living with dementia who benefit from understanding of their languages, cultural references and background.

Mushkil provides other services such as advocacy, counselling and therapy, crisis intervention, welfare rights, interpreting, befriending, bereavement support and volunteering services. Through its staff, volunteers and community involvement it reflects and enriches the cultural, religious and social make-up of the local community.

At the heart of its service are the people receiving care. Mushkil Aasaan understands the need to respect individuals and honour their uniqueness and diversity, their wishes and feelings and give them the chance to maintain community links, friendships and religious practices.

Mushkil’s building on Upper Tooting Road is long established at the heart of the Tooting life. It hosts a wide range of community uses including support groups for older people to tackle health inequalities with classes for exercise, healthy eating, mental health. Other voluntary community organisations regularly use the meeting space, all working to the benefit of the local area.