Investment Enables Expansion of “Matchmaking” Service, Providing Tailored Care for Individuals
Somerset based Quovita CIC, working in the domiciliary care sector, has received £150,000 of investment from the Health & Wellbeing Challenge Fund (South West) (H&WCF) managed by social investment company Resonance. The investment will make it possible for the CIC to grow its capacity, develop new IT systems and expand its areas of operation into Devon & Cornwall.
Quovita is different to others in its sector as it is not a direct provider, but instead offers an introduction service, linking those needing care to the right carers for their individual needs. The carers are known as “micro providers”.
Sitting somewhere between “Match.com” and “Uber.com”, Quovita enables the provision of a more person-centred approach to care, than can be provided by the bigger providers. It was set up three years ago by Natalie Palmer, who was herself a care giver, when she identified a gap in the market with a clear demand from both carers and care receivers for a more bespoke approach to the provision of care to clients in their own homes. This approach changes the way that the micro providers interact with those needing care. A longer-term relationship is cultivated between the carer and care client, where the client feels more secure with familiar faces and receives personalised support, and the carer has a greater understanding of the individual’s needs. This clearly distinguishes Quovita, as its micro providers work as individuals or as pairs of providers as opposed to the larger teams from the bigger companies, where a client might see numerous different carers, each of whom knows little about them as individuals.
Quovita’s carers are self-employed, however the company’s financial model is such that it pays its carers better wages than some other providers. The CIC is an example of the ‘Gig economy’ working well – ensuring employment rights and good pay coupled with the flexibility that goes hand in hand with being self-employed.
The Health & Wellbeing Challenge Fund is an impact investment fund established with investment from the Growth Fund and South West Academic Health Science Network (SWAHSN). The Growth Fund is managed by Access – The Foundation for Social Investment, and is funded from the Big Lottery Fund and Big Society Capital.
The Fund seeks to make social impact investment more accessible and relevant to smaller social enterprises looking to expand their operations and impact in the South West linked to the broad theme of Health & Wellbeing. Quovita fits the H&WCF criteria perfectly – a small enterprise, operating to CQC’s high standards, working towards registration and with a plan to grow its impact by providing for even more people needing personal care at home.
Leila Sharland, Investment Manager for the H&WC Fund, said of Quovita: “I am very pleased that one of my first investments since joining Resonance is going to such a progressive and forward thinking care company with exciting plans for using the money and I am looking forward to seeing them grow. I am also pleased because Shantanu Bhagwat, who supported Quovita by providing a business plan and financial forecast model through a grant from the Reach Fund, has taken on a non-executive role on the Quovita board to support them in their growth phase.”
Natalie Palmer, Managing Director of Quovita said of the investment: “We see exciting times ahead, the process of sourcing the funding was a challenge but we are pleased that we have met and fulfilled all the conditions required by Resonance.
“We now feel more than ready and able to achieve all our stated targets both in recruitment and expansion into Cornwall and Devon. In support of this new endeavour we have started actively linking in with our local community including the Newquay Ending Loneliness group. We are keen to create a network of like-minded passionate people who can contribute in making a difference to people’s everyday lives.
“Our IT Creative Developer, Evan Ritter has now implemented his web strategy to allow us to develop our in-house bespoke platform, which will support both our carers and clients that use our service to enhance the personalised approach that we aim to demonstrate in any and all interactions between us as a company, and the clients and their families.”
(Photo features: Natalie Palmer, Managing Director and Evan Ritter, Creative Developer)
More About Quovita
Assisting with life. Supporting independence through flexible, personalised home care services. We’re a dedicated group of people who are excited about care and technology, and how these together can make a difference in people’s everyday lives.
We at Quovita are truly dedicated to providing a means for our clients to live life in their own individual and unique ways. After all, just because a person finds they may need some extra assistance in their day to day life we need to support them to continue that life in their own chosen way.
Our aim is to shatter the accepted mould in health & social care.
We intend to remodel care delivery and improve our Service Users future, by actively supporting Service Providers- to connect families, friends and multidisciplinary teams.
We all need to share one story in support of our service user’s life in a personal yet professional and effective way, thereby playing a part in the journey we share.
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