Charity set for major award

PUBLISHED: 16:42 03 July 2009 | UPDATED: 21:49 31 May 2010

RMG Photography - 10th June 2009

RMG Photography - 10th June 2009

A CHARITY which improves the lives of disabled children is in the running to be named the best voluntary project in the country. Saffron Walden-based charity Fledglings helps more than 4000 children with special needs or disabilities every year. The chari

A CHARITY which improves the lives of disabled children is in the running to be named the best voluntary project in the country.

Saffron Walden-based charity Fledglings helps more than 4000 children with special needs or disabilities every year.

The charity has now made it through to the semi-finals of the 2009 National Lottery Awards where they will compete against nine other contestants across the UK to be crowned the Best Voluntary or Charity Project.

Fledglings' founder Ruth Lingard said: "Parents face all sorts of problems when bringing up a child with a disability. Helping overcome the barriers that disabled children face allows them to gain more independence and join in the everyday activities that most of us take for granted."

The overall winner will receive a £2000 prize and the chance to star in a BBC television show.

Fledglings help to find solutions to some of the everyday practical problems facing children with disabilities including safety in the home, eating and drinking equipment, and clothing.

Since the charity was founded in 1998 it has grown rapidly and now has more than 9000 care professionals and families on its mailing list nationwide.

Tom Evetts, from Stansted, has severe multiple disabilities including cerebral palsy and epilepsy. Now that he is in mainstream schooling he requires a bib big enough to keep his uniform clean at lunchtimes.

His mother Melanie said: "All I could find was baby bibs until I got in touch with Fledglings. They supplied exactly what I wanted, in the school uniform colour. It helps preserve his dignity and makes such a difference to a growing boy."

The charity now needs people to call and vote for them to go through to final three.

Ms Lingard said: "We are delighted to have received so much support locally, and now we would love to see Saffron Walden scooping the National Lottery Award."

To vote for Fledglings, call 0844 686 6754 or vote online by visiting www.lotterygoodcauses.org.uk/awards Votes have to be in by noon on Friday July 10.

For more information about the charity visit www.fledglings.org.uk


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