Scottish Autism launch fundraising drive after revenues plunge and demand for services soars

Scotland’s largest provider of autism-specific services and a leading authority and advocate for good autism practice, has reported a significant fall in revenues combined with a spike in demand for many of its services due to the impact of the Covid-19 lockdown.

Scottish Autism has today launched a new fundraising campaign appealing to donors for support to ensure it can continue to provide high level services to autistic people and their families across Scotland.

While experiencing a major rise in demand for core services, including a 101% increase in enquiries to its Autism Advice Helpline, Scottish Autism is also forecasting a loss of half its annual income from the cancellation of fundraising and supporters’ events due to the global pandemic.

In a year when many UK families will be cutting or curtailing their summer travel plans, the charity has now launched its “Holiday Her” campaign appealing for people to donate the cost of what they would have spent on summer holiday essentials such as sunscreen, a new swimsuit or a pair of flip flops.

Scottish Autism CEO Dorry McLaughlin (pictured) said: “Covid-19 has presented a double blow to our organisation. The lockdown has created higher levels of stress and anxiety for many autistic people and their families, who’ve needed our support more than ever, while the cancellation of events has really hit the finances that are essential in providing key services. This year’s fundraising campaign is therefore critical to our ability to maintain the services and support that so many autistic individuals and their families rely upon.

“Many of us will be unable to enjoy an overseas family summer holiday this year due to the ongoing uncertainty and travel restrictions surrounding the pandemic. We are therefore asking people to turn this disappointment into a positive by being a ‘Holiday Hero’ and donating the cost of a holiday item through social media.

“At a time of significant financial pressure for many, we appeal to people to think of the challenges that autistic people and their families are facing. The essential support provided by charities like ours will be needed well beyond the lockdown.”

More details of the campaign can be found here.

Picture (c) Scottish Autism.