Disability Wales has been awarded a funding package by Welsh Government totaling £600,000 over the next three years, which means that it is no longer at risk of closure this March as feared following the news before Christmas that it lost its core grant due to changes in Welsh Government grant making arrangements.
Disability Wales has received core funding from the social services division within Welsh Government for over 40 years enabling it to act as the voice of disabled people’s organisations in Wales promoting rights, equality and independence.
The change from core to project funding under the new Welsh Government Sustainable Social Services Third Sector Grant Scheme meant that DW no longer fitted the criteria so lost its main source of funding when it was not awarded a grant under the scheme.
Financial support to DW under the new package will be transferred from the Social Services and Integration Division delegated budget to the Minister for Communities and Tackling Poverty.
Responding to the news about the funding announcement, DW’s Chief Executive Rhian Davies stated:
“Following a traumatic few weeks for the organisation, it is a huge relief to have secured the future of Disability Wales at a time when widespread cuts in benefits and services mean that the need for a national organisation to champion disabled people’s rights could not be greater. The agreement to award this funding package demonstrates that Welsh Government values the contribution made by DW over many policy areas”.
DW’s Chairperson, Wendy Ashton stated:
I am delighted that DW will be able to continue our vital work including delivery of our exciting and innovative projects Enabling Wales, Citizen Directed Co-operatives Cymru and DRILL. I take this opportunity to thank our members and indeed everyone who has supported us over such a difficult time, the goodwill towards the organisation has been overwhelming and certainly heartened us all.
The funding package means that DW is no longer at risk of imminent closure, nevertheless the organisation’s income will be substantially reduced. Over the next few months DW will undertake a strategic review involving Directors and staff to reassess priorities and identify other funding opportunities to ensure a more sustainable future.
Disability Wales is the national association of Disabled People’s Organisations striving to achieve the rights, equality and independence of all disabled people.