Have any of you ever seen afternoon TV on some of the digital channels? Expensive TV adverts skilfully filmed and produced in a way that is designed to pull heartstrings and loosen purse –strings for all kinds of causes and charities.
Aberdeen Action on Disability is a user – led charity. It is not a single–issue charity that has immediate emotional appeal. It takes a lot of explaining to our sponsors as to what we actually do and engage in. Our public- face is in providing a physical meeting place for the physically and sensory disabled, to meet in fellowship, bringing a vast pool of knowledge and experience together. These premises are now being outgrown as more people seek our services.
In our own quiet way, we try hard to help ourselves without judgement of others situations. It is this knowledge and understanding that is so valuable when our volunteers help others to fill out complex Benefit or Welfare applications, or understand the help and advice a client will receive better elsewhere.
We husband our meagre funding to provide projects for those who have been isolated by disability, and hopefully our clients, members and those who seek advice and help, will find fellowship and support.
Recent Charity drives by the local press have resulted in Diagnostic Scanners, equipment and funds for the hospital. Cancer Charities have benefited greatly also, from the public giving of their time, money and dedication to fundraising.
I recently asked a question of our Present Chair and Past Chairwoman, in separate conversations, if they suddenly were gifted a million pounds, what they would like to see it being used for. Without hesitation, both envisioned a place where all the people with disabilities in Aberdeen could come under one roof. Where parking, access, and all kinds of outreach, advice, work and therapy could be housed. Multiple charities, each with their own specialities all under one roof, sharing resources and expertise- a one stop shop.
Now there is a project that even a small portion of the £50 Million on offer from the Sir Ian Wood Foundation to the City Council for the re-generation of the city centre , would result in long–lasting beneficial effects for all the disabled of the region.
Are there any philanthropic fundraisers out there who are prepared to pick up the challenge of that dream, and work toward providing facilities under one roof for all the disabled?
I certainly hope so.