PEOPLE across Wales with disability and health-related difficulties will be benefitting from the latest funding announced by the Big Lottery Fund.
As part of the latest announcements from the Awards for All small grants programme, a total of £284,694 will be shared across 70 projects in Wales.
Hands Up for Downs, based in Swansea will receive £5,000 to provide speech and language courses to children under 5 years old with Down’s syndrome as well as for their parents and carers.
Secretary for the Hands Up For Downs project, Laura Stewart, said in receipt of the grant: “This grant will be used to fund Speech & Language Therapy for children who have Down’s syndrome in the Swansea area. It will also help pay for members of Hands Up For Downs to attend a Makaton Sign Language Course. People with Down’s syndrome often struggle with speech so early intervention is vital for developing their communication skills. It will further their ability to interact with the people in their lives so that they can express their needs, gain confidence and independence, develop other skills and become fully participating, valued members of society.”
Narcolepsy UK based in Ceredigion will benefit from £4,962 to improve their services by recruiting a new sessional worker to deliver networking events in five new locations across Wales for people with narcolepsy and their family and carers. Narcolepsy is a sleep disorder which affects the brains’ ability to regulate the normal sleep-wake cycle leading to symptoms such as disturbed night-time sleep and excessive sleepiness throughout the day, and affects approximately 31,000 people in the UK.
In the Vale of Glamorgan, Marie Cure Cancer Care will be able to improve the services offered to their patients and carers by using £4,482 to provide additional training for staff and volunteers in complimentary therapy.
Carolyn Turner, Interim Day Therapy Unit Manager at Marie Curie’s Cardiff and Vale Hospice said: “We are absolutely delighted to have been awarded this money from the Awards for All Wales funding programme and welcome the benefits it will bring for our service users. The funds will enable us to train volunteers and staff in the hospice’s day therapy unit, helping them to deliver a wide range of therapies, services and support to those people living with a terminal illness.”
Merthyr People First will receive £4,340 to run a weekly cookery class and tutorial sessions in jewellery-making for members with learning disabilities with the aim of increasing skills and knowledge and improving diets and lifestyles. Furthermore Rhyl’s Raptors Wheelchair Basketball Club will use £4,500 to fund new equipment, refreshments and venue hire towards additional activities to the main club that will increase participation numbers in the group.
Other projects being funded include Ysgol Penllwyn After-School Club in Aberystwyth will use £1,850 to teach children how to stay safe when using the internet, learn about social media platforms and etiquette, and to enhance their IT skills.
Catheryn Sharon Morgan, After- School Club Coordinator said: “With this grant we can broaden the activities that we can offer, and it also ties in with work on educating children and helping to protect them online and on the internet.”
Elsewhere, Project Seagrass, based in Swansea will receive £4,900 to pilot a marine biodiversity education scheme for 60 children. The programme will raise awareness and allow young people to learn from marine biology experts on conserving these environments.
Gareth Williams, Awards for All Programme Manager for the Big Lottery Fund in Wales, said: “Awards for All is having a positive impact throughout Wales. Money is helping to establish groups, societies and clubs, promoting learning, increasing volunteering opportunities and helping to build stronger communities.”