Stop Highland Council from cutting funding to Special Needs Action Project
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As parents of the children and young people who attend SNAP we urge the council to continue to fund the 43% it has always provided for the service. Without this funding, SNAP could fold and with it the only social outlet that most of the youngsters derive so much pleasure, stimulation and social skills from.
These youngsters are the weakest and most vulnerable members of our society, who cannot speak up and fight for themselves. They are unable to join other ordinary clubs like other young people as they have severe and complex needs. Some are wheel-chair bound with cerebral palsy, others have severe learning difficulties like Down’s Sydrome while others with autistism find it hard to socialize with ordinary children.
Without SNAP these youngsters will have nowhere to go – the friendships they have forged, over the years, through the countless activities they have enjoyed together will be lost and they will be forced to stay at home and be dependent on their parents’/carer’ resources.
Apart from the disastrous impact on their mental health and self-esteem, the social skills learnt have enabled many youngsters to reintegrate into mainstream education. These and other hidden savings that SNAP have ultimltimately accrued indirectly for Highland Council through the countless clubs they run - including after-school, stimulating weekend out-and-abouts, weekend sleepovers in adventure centres like Badaguish and youth clubs for those at 18 + , vastly outweigh the initial yearly costs, but most of its benefits are priceless.
20 highly-skilled and dedicated staff will lose their jobs, while many of the volunteers aged 16-19 will lose the valuable work experience needed to get into careers such as medicine, social services and teaching.
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