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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.

MSPs back campaign to increase charity’s funding

This news post is 8 months old

The Yard has seen its equivalent funding per service user dramatically drop. 

Politicians and the family of a girl with a rare condition have made funding pleas for a charity play hub. 

The Yard, in Kirkcaldy, Fife, has warned of increasing pressure on the services they can offer.

In 2016 funding for The Yard from the Scottish Government was equal to £163 per child, but money hasn’t increased with demand for their services. Now, the money available for each child is the equivalent to £39 per child.

CEO of The Yard, Celine Sinclair, told STV News: “The Yard funding has been static and in real terms that means for us a 76% drop.

“That makes it very challenging for us to support families in Scotland with disabled children and young people who need our support.

“We support families not just practically but emotionally too and we build communities that support each other on a journey that can be very difficult.”

The disability charity has received support from the family of four-year-old Eilish Cowan, who is  one of only 200 children in the world with TUBA1A, a genetic condition that means she is visually impaired and struggles to walk.

Her family say the hub is in desperate need of vital funding to remain open.

Eilish’s father Lawrence Cowan told STV News: “When Eilish gets to The Yard, she’s free.

“She’s defined by what she wants to do and not her disability. And places like that are not everywhere and they need to be.

“This is about more than funding, it’s about belonging. She deserves to be loved for who she is. Places like The Yard provide that in spades. It’s a gem.

“It’s about a place to be and a place to be loved and play. And that’s what we’re asking for the Scottish Government to support.

“A place for my daughters to have a place where she belongs.”

A Members' Debate at Holyrood, brought forward by Labour MSP Claire Baker, on the “Our Kids Won’t Wait” campaign saw backing give by MSPs from all political parties.

Speaking during the debate, Minister for Children and Young People Natalie Don told the Chamber: “It was our aim the continued funding would ensure the sustainability of organisations and continued delivery of support to thousands of children families and young people across Scotland.

“However, I am aware The Yard has made calls for an increase in funding to allow them to deliver even more of the valuable services they already provide.”



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8 months ago

It is great that the Yard are standing up and fighting for increased funding, I wish them all success in this, they thoroughly deserve it. However, the whole third sector in Scotland has been sitting on almost static funding since 2016 and no chance of a change until at least 2025. Our costs are rocketing, staff expecting (rightly so) pay rises to deal with the cost of living and we are pulling on reserves just to survive. Its looking very dire indeed not only for the organisations but for the hundreds of thousands of beneficiaries we are here to support.

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