Princess Anne visits care charity in Dunbartonshire
Sense Scotland staff at TouchBase Dunbartonshire received a visit from their Patron, HRH The Princess Royal.
Her Royal Highness toured the specialised social care provider’s Dunbartonshire service in Bishopbriggs, observing activities including music, art and baking, and meeting the people supported by Sense Scotland, their families, as well as staff and volunteers.
During the visit, The Princess Royal was presented with a framed copy of Sense Scotland’s 2022 Christmas card designed by Mark Niven, a person supported by the organisation.
Mark said: "I am feeling honoured and privileged to meet the Princess Royal. I am also very proud to be presenting Princess Anne with my artwork and I hope she enjoys my Christmas card. Meeting the Princess Royal will be a special experience I will remember forever".
Her Royal Highness’s visit also provided an opportunity for Sense Scotland’s Trustees to highlight the current challenges within the social care sector and the impact of this on the people they support and their families.
The Dunbartonshire service, along with other Visual Impairment and Learning Disability (VILD) services, was successfully transferred to Sense Scotland from the Royal National Institute of Blind People (RNIB) in January 2022. This transfer ensured the continuation of quality, specialised care for 90 families and sustained employment for 100 members of staff.
As Patron, HRH The Princess Royal has a long history of supporting Sense Scotland: in 1991, she opened the charity’s Family Resource Centre in Glasgow; in 1997, she opened their supported living services in Coatbridge; and in the last twenty years, she has officially opened the organisation’s TouchBase Glasgow and TouchBase Lanarkshire services in 2008 and 2016 respectively.
Angela Bonomy, Chief Executive Officer for Sense Scotland, said: “Her Royal Highness’s latest visit demonstrates her ongoing, unwavering support for Sense Scotland and people with communication support needs associated with physical, learning and sensory disabilities. It was also a very welcome morale boost for staff who worked tirelessly during the Covid-19 pandemic, and who continue to provide vital services in the challenging social care sector.”