A Cwmbran based charity which provides welfare rights services to support disabled people, their families and their carers, has received backing from Communities 2.0, the Welsh Government’s digital inclusion programme. The support will help the Disability Advice Project upgrade their training equipment so they can deliver more client based training and to offer up to-date facilities to groups using their training room.
Communities 2.0 has supported the charity with an investment of over £5,500, which will help improve efficiencies and develop valuable new income streams. It has also provided technical expertise and advice. Communities 2.0 is a Welsh Government programme which is part funded by the European Regional Development Fund.
The aim of the Disability Advice Project is to ensure that disabled people receive the full benefit of their entitlement to care services, adaptations to live and move around and access to the welfare benefit entitlements. The project provides high quality independent specialist advice, advocacy and information for disabled people, their families and carers. It is run by a dedicated team who all have experience of caring for a disabled person or who are themselves disabled. All donations from clients and other individuals are reinvested into the project to fund the free welfare rights work. Since April 1999, the Disability Advice Project has represented over 1000 people at disability benefit tribunals.
Richard Berry is Chair of the Disability Advice Project,
“The award of funding from Communities 2.0 will mean that we can upgrade our hardware and provide a reliable and efficient service to our clients - disabled people, their families and carers. It will also significantly improve our training facilities, increase our ability to hire out our training room with state of the art facilities. The resulting income will boost our ability to continue to offer one to one support to disabled people across the south east. The Committee and volunteer staff at DAP are grateful for this support, which will open up tremendous new opportunities for the organisation”.
Communities 2.0 project director Cathryn Marcus commented:
“Communities 2.0 is delighted to be able to support these developments for the Disability Advice Project. The project provides essential services to people who need to ensure that they can access the support they need and are entitled to. The Communities 2.0 support will help the project to become sustainable in the future”.
This investment is just part of a total of over £75,000 invested across Wales as part of this round of Communities 2.0 funding. To date over £540,000 has been approved for direct investment in social enterprises and micro businesses in Wales, supporting 100 enterprises.
In addition, Communities 2.0 has supported 267 enterprises with significant assistance and advice for adopting or exploiting Information Communication Technology. Over 330 community groups and organisations have also benefitted from significant assistance and advice from the project, many of whom have used this to inform the creation of new social enterprises.
Communities 2.0 is a Welsh Government programme and is part of the Delivering a Digital Wales strategy. Communities 2.0 is delivered by four partner organisations – the Wales Co-operative Centre, Pembrokeshire Association of Voluntary Services, Carmarthenshire County Council and the George Ewart Evans Centre for Storytelling (University of South Wales). Communities 2.0 works in the Convergence area of Wales and parts of Wrexham, Flintshire and Powys, helping communities and small enterprises to make the most of the internet.