Disability charities share £2.4m in additional government funding

More than a dozen charities supporting people with disabilities are to share £2.4m in government funding.

The additional funding has been pledged by the Department of Health and Socical Care for charities supporting people with disabilities, including those with autism and learning disabilities.

Money will be used to fund schemes such as sensory play equipment for children and sporting schemes and is to be shared among 13 charities.

Other priorities of the funding are around ramping up service delivery such as expanding helplines, and providing mental health support for charity staff as well as beneficiaries.

Those benefitting are:

• Sense
• RNIB
• RNID
• NDTi
• Scope
• Leonard Cheshire
• Mencap
• National Autistic Society
• British Institute of Learning Disability
• Contact
• Respond
• Learning Disability England
• Challenging Behaviour Foundation

Charities benefitting have said the extra funding is especially necessary to develop services to support people with disabilities amid the Covid-19 pandemic and as UK society recovers.

“During the pandemic and various national lockdowns, people with sight loss have faced additional concerns and practical challenges, from how to practise social distancing to how to connect with others online,” said RNIB head of advice and customer service Jamie Dormandy.

“We are very pleased that DHSC has recognised the additional impact the pandemic has had on blind and partially sighted people and the role RNIB has played in providing vital support.”

Meanwhile, Contact’s director of family support Anne Brook said the funding is enabling the charity “to be more innovative and reach out to more families in brand new ways”.

This includes setting up a phone service for parents to “get advice about coping with the emotional consequences of caring throughout the pandemic”.

Disability charities have been at the forefront of voluntary sector efforts to use virtual reality technology to support beneficiaires.

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