Disability Shetland is a charity which provides direct support to children, families and adults with disabilities and additional support needs. Responding to identified needs, they run groups, clubs and create personal programmes for individuals.
Disability Shetland have over 60 volunteers that support their services and clubs the length and breadth of Shetland. The volunteers help out at the organisations’ clubs, supporting children, young people and adults with additional support needs and disabilities to lead an ordinary life, to be included, to make and maintain friendships, keep active and generally have fun. They also have volunteer skippers who maintain the accessible boat and the board of Trustees is made up of volunteers too. There are many supporters of Disability Shetland who put in hours of effort helping to raise vital funds for the service by hosting fundraising events and promoting the organisation’s services both in and outside of Shetland.
Disability Shetland started with a few social groups within Lerwick. Some of these groups are still much loved and going strong today, and in recent years they’ve managed to expand their services across the isles reaching and connecting rural communities.
The group make it clear that this wouldn't have been possible without the “excellent team of dedicated, caring and reliable volunteers”. The expansion has been done whilst keeping up with their ethos and what they believe to be the most important values of the charity – “group work and face-to-face contact with our participants”. Many of their clubs, especially in more rural areas, are highly integrated which promotes inclusion of children, young people and adults with disabilities in their own communities. This really helps to “enable someone who has a disability to lead an ordinary life; such as making new friendships and reducing isolation and loneliness, whilst also meeting the community's needs of more social opportunities for their residents”.
Disability Shetland have benefited massively from the help of our close-knit community; through fundraising, donations and man hours of volunteers.
If you want to make an impact on someone elses life, by either volunteering or offering financial support, as a business or as an individual you can read about what you could possibly offer here. Alternatively, find out more about Disability Shetland here.