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Leaders with Lived Experience at the heart of new National Lottery awards

Today (Tuesday February 16) The National Lottery Community Fund announced £150,000 to three Scottish projects supporting recovery from COVID-19 and tackling issues their leaders have lived experience of dealing with.

These awards, from the largest funder of community activity in the UK, mean Deafblind Scotland, Resilience Learning Partnership Ltd and Umbrella Lane will all be better placed to embed experts by experience in all aspects of their operations. This funding also enables The National Lottery Community Fund, as well as the wider sector, to continue learning about how people with first-hand experience can become leaders, and how funders can support them to do so.

Deafblind Scotland receive funding of £45,518 to support the delivery of their Dare to Dream 2021-2026 strategy. This will focus on building peer leadership skills and opportunities for deafblind people supporting them to working with the Scottish Advisory Group on Deafblindness (SAGOD) as well as engaging with national policy and service developments.

Isabella Goldie, Chief Executive, Deafblind Scotland, said:

“Today’s much needed funding will help ensure people with dual sensory impairment can participate in decisions that can make or break their ability to access a full life and to take up their role as active and equal citizens.”

“Deafblind people are amongst the least visible in society. Many are older and unable to connect with life in their communities without specialist support or adaptations to the way that we operate our public services and businesses and we are delighted our lived experience project is being supported by The National Lottery Community Fund.”

Established two years ago Resilience Learning Partnership (RLP) is an education and training provider specialising in psychological trauma and lived experience.

Today’s award of £50,000 means RLP can now create a leadership programme for people with lived experience, to support them as they prepare to enter the charity sector.

Shumela Ahmed, RLP Managing Director, said:

This funding will allow us to cover vital core running costs and means we can now create a leadership programme for people with Lived Experience which we feel is greatly lacking in Scotland.

“We hope in turn we can influence change in Scotland’s third sector and open up more leadership opportunities for people with Lived Experience. Thank-you to The National Lottery for this award and I am excited to see the difference our programme could make to the sector.

Building on the lived experience of sex workers in Scotland Umbrella Lane will use their award of £50,000 to expand their reach to the most marginalised sex workers as well as support other organisations to develop a meaningful and effective trauma informed approach to this work.

Sex worker involvement and leadership have been fundamental values of Umbrella Lane since its inception in 2015. As a peer led project it is committed to the transformative potential of leadership amongst stigmatised and marginalised communities.

Charity Founder, Dr Anastacia Ryan, welcomed this funding. She said:

“This new funding will allow Umbrella Lane to go further in our mission to activate lived expertise to create positive change for all sex workers in Scotland.”

The National Lottery Community Fund’s Scotland Chair, Kate Stillsaid:

“Thanks to National Lottery players, people with lived experience will use their unique expertise to lead social change and help their communities to thrive, which is vital in the response to - and looking ahead to the recovery from - COVID-19.  I am delighted that three Scottish organisations are amongst those benefitting from this funding. These groups will support and train those whom they work to become experts by experience whilst creating positive change for others.”

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