This website uses cookies for anonymised analytics and for account authentication. See our privacy and cookies policies for more information.

The voice of Scotland’s vibrant voluntary sector

Published by Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations

TFN is published by the Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations, Mansfield Traquair Centre, 15 Mansfield Place, Edinburgh, EH3 6BB. The Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations (SCVO) is a Scottish Charitable Incorporated Organisation. Registration number SC003558.

“Beyond devastated”: Charity gutted at being forced to close


Aberdeen’s Autism Understanding Scotland will shut its doors at the end of January. 

An Aberdeen autism charity has announced it will close at the end of this month amid concerns over long-term funding. 

Autism Understanding Scotland announced it will shut its doors at the end of January, warning that they have had “significant issues in attracting longer term funding, and having that funding arrive in a timely manner”. 

The charity published a statement on its website, adding that staff have been left devastated. 

They also confirmed that members would continue to organise Aberdeen Autistic Pride each year, despite the closure. 

Autism Understanding Scotland, based at Regent Quay in the city, provides a variety of services aimed at increasing understanding of autism and building support strategies for autistic people. 

The charity had previously received funds from the National Post Diagnostic Support Service, which was provided by the Scottish Government from 2020 to 2023, which saw its funding cut last summer.

They wrote: “This has been exacerbated by the fact we are a relatively new charity meaning many funds were simply not open to us, and many funders deciding to pivot away from supporting autistic people. 

“The decision by the Scottish Government not to fund services for autistic children, having previously funded this for three years through the National Post Diagnostic Fund pilot, with very little notice, was a huge blow to autism charities and autistic persons organisations across Scotland. 

“This has made it increasingly difficult to maintain our staffing levels and services. It also put immense pressure on those staff we were able to retain, resulting in burnout. 

“The board has worked with others looking at options to continue, however the lack of long term funding, and a lack of permanent staff from the end of January, has left us in a position where we need to close down the charity. We are beyond devastated that this is the case. 

“This is not a decision we came to lightly, or that we wanted to make. We ask that you are gentle with our staff team while interacting with us as we are all doing our best in our time remaining. 

“We realise that this is distressing news to many of you and want to reassure people that we have worked hard to avoid this outcome. Many of those involved remain dedicated to the autistic community and are seeking ways to continue supporting as they can.”



Be the first to comment