A charity that has provided support and activities to some of the city’s most vulnerable children for more than 20 years will have to close if the proposed funding cuts are implemented.
DASH Club Glasgow offers post-school and holiday lessons for young people with complex additional support needs.
It is one of the groups affected by the Glasgow City Council’s decision to replace the Integrated Grant Fund with a “more accessible” Glasgow Communities Fund.
Project Manager Mary Cuttle said, “The children who attend our club are unable to access other services due to the nature of their vulnerabilities and the complexities of support they need.
“The few hours we give can mean the difference between a home-managed family or home care for your child. We are all absolutely devastated. ”
DASH Club Glasgow was founded in 1999 by parents who were concerned about the lack of social activities for their teenage children at the end of the school day.
There are three sessions per week after school and vacation programs when funds are available.
“We lobbied our councilors,” said Mary. “It was so difficult and the staff are heartbroken.”
The DASH team, based in Millerston in the northeast of the city, consists of Mary, who has been a project manager for four years, a part-time development officer and 22 support staff.
Mary added, “I cannot praise her highly enough for her commitment and her ability.”
Support agent Kerry McDonald said, “Closing our club will make life so difficult, not only for the health and wellbeing of the children but also for their parents.
“The whole community will be affected.”
Kerry accompanies the young members of DASH Club Glasgow in a variety of activities including kayaking and drama.
“It’s about helping them connect with their friends, have fun and try different things – all the things that they should do and that with a little help we can help them,” she added .
“I joined in December and even in the short time I’ve been here I can see the importance of this charity. We have over 20 years of experience providing specialized nursing and have an excellent reputation – it is absolutely ridiculous for the funds to be withdrawn. ”
She added, “Without her, many of the children we support will be without anything – that’s just wrong.”