About us - FitzRoy

About us

Sixty years ago, most adults with learning disabilities lived their lives isolated and often ostracised from their communities. Elizabeth FitzRoy and John Williams had a vision of a better life for people with disabilities.

Our history

Since FitzRoy was founded as a pioneering alternative to institutional care, we have supported hundreds of people with learning disabilities and autism to live the life they choose. Over 60 years ago, our founder Elizabeth FitzRoy was banging on closed doors, going into battle for people with learning disabilities, determined that they should be living in safe, loving and supportive homes and not institutions.

Today, demand for these homes and services is higher than ever. We now support more than 900 people with learning disabilities, autism and mental health needs in over 100 homes and services across England.

When our founders floated the idea of small family-like homes, they received a lot of criticism. When they opened the first of these homes, Donec in Hampshire, one director of social services was quoted as saying: ‘they’ll be bankrupt in six months’.

60 years later we are still here, and we remain committed to the vision of Elizabeth FitzRoy and co-founder John Williams. Their values remain the values of FitzRoy today – we see the person, we are brave and we are creative – and this threads through everything we do.

Our mission and vision

FitzRoy transforms lives every day, supporting people with learning disabilities to do the simple things that make a real difference to their everyday life. Our vision, mission and values guide us each step of the way, and are as important now as when the charity first began. Our vision is a society where people are treated as equals, regardless of their disability. Our mission is to transform lives by supporting people with learning disabilities to lead the lives they choose.

Involving the people we support

We believe that the best people to help us improve our services are the people who use them. The people we support take part in our service user forum, Nationwide, and help us to recruit the best people by taking part in staff interviews and inductions. Our goal is to give those we support a collective voice in their care and the ability to influence the thinking and focus of the organisation.
Find out more about our work