More than £10m in life-changing funding awarded to over 5,000 young disabled people in Scotland in 5 years

Left to Right: Transition Fund recipient Eireann McAuley; ILF Scotland Chief Executive Officer, Peter Scott OBE; ILF Scotland Chair, Susan Douglas-Scott CBE; Maree Todd MSP; Transition Fund recipient Andrew Batchelor. (Photo: Robert Perry)

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INDEPENDENT Living Fund (ILF) Scotland, the public body that provides funding support to young disabled people living in Scotland, has awarded over £10m of funding to more than 5,000 people through its life-changing Transition Fund over the past five years. 

ILF Scotland marks these milestones ahead of the United Nations International Day of Persons with Disabilities (03 December) whose theme for 2022 is Transformative solutions for inclusive development: the role of innovation in fuelling an accessible and equitable world.   

The Transition Fund, administered by ILF Scotland, is for disabled people aged between 16 and 25 and aims to help young people develop their independence, confidence, and participation within their communities. Since 2017, funds have been used for new activities and experiences that will improve the transition period from childhood into adulthood. 

The Transition Fund’s 5-year anniversary and achievements of the young people who have benefited from this transformative funding were celebrated at an event on 30 November at the Glasgow Science Centre.   

This was attended by nearly 200 young disabled people and their families from across Scotland and supported by Maree Todd MSP, the Scottish Government’s Minister for Public Health, Women’s Health and Sport.  

Peter Scott OBE, ILF Scotland Chief Executive Officer, commented: “We are proud to celebrate five years of the Transition Fund, which has had a profound impact on more than 5,000 young disabled people from across every local authority in Scotland. 

“The theme of International Day of Persons with Disabilities 2022 holds so much meaning to us and our recipients. Our funding support is truly transformative, helping to enhance confidence, independence and participation in Scotland’s communities and society at large, with a real drive towards ‘trying something new”. 

“Since its inception in 2018, we have provided funding support to young disabled people across every Local Authority in Scotland.  The number of applications and the value of funds awarded increased during the COVID-19 pandemic, with more young disabled turning to the Transition Fund for support. ILF Scotland also reported a rise in community participation after receiving funding from those young disabled people otherwise at risk of isolation.” 

Maree Todd MSP, Minister for Public Health, Women’s Health and Sport, added:  

“It was a real privilege to join ILF Scotland in celebrating the achievements of young people and the first five years of the Transition Fund.  

“The Scottish Government fully recognises the challenges that many young disabled people experience as they transition to adult life and we are determined to improve the support offered to young people during this important period of their lives. 

“I am therefore delighted to announce the launch of the ILF Scotland Transition Fund Technology Grant. This grant will be easy to apply for and offers the applicant the opportunity to get an iPad, a Surface Go 3 tablet or a Chromebook laptop to enable them to overcome digital isolation and connect with online and physical communities.”   

New for 2022, the Technology Grant has been introduced to build on the Transition Fund’s financial support and meet demand from those applying for technology to help them stay connected. ILF Scotland staff can offer guidance to those applicants requiring specific technology as part of this new support. To apply visit https://ilf.scot/transition-fund/technology-grant/ 

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