ILF Scotland Transition Fund gives young people the chance to try something new

ILF Scotland set up the Transition Fund to provide grants for young disabled adults who want to enhance their independence, get involved in the community and try something new. To date, they have provided nearly £2 million to over 1,000 young people throughout Scotland through the Transition Fund.

At a time when many young people are becoming more independent, people with disabilities can actually feel less independent. ILF Scotland aims to help increase young people’s independence by providing grants for young disabled adults to get involved in activities that support their confidence and social interaction.

Giving disabled young people an opportunity to try new things

Grants from the Transition Fund also give young people the chance to try out new things. Not only does this provide them with an avenue to pursue their passions and interests, it also gives them the opportunity to explore different activities that they may not have previously been considered. Increased opportunities expand horizons for young people with disabilities.

16-year-old Katie McCluskey, who has Down’s syndrome, applied to the Transition Fund to help her fulfil her dream of working with horses by undertaking Equido Horsemanship lessons.

Photo credit: Phil Wilkinson

The course, at Phantom’s Legacy in North Lanarkshire, has been specially tailored to Katie’s requirements and she will receive a formal qualification, which will enable her to work with horses.

On her recent grant, Katie said: “I love taking care of horses, and I’m happy to be learning more about them. My favourite things are brushing and walking the horse.

“One day I would like to work with horses, and I will be able to do that after I get a qualification in horsemanship.”

Alongside funding for the course, Katie was also able to purchase the vital equipment she needs for horse riding and essential lessons.

Speaking of the funding, Katie’s father, Stephen McCluskey said: “Having Down’s syndrome often limits the opportunities available to people like Katie to experience new activities and avenues.

“But with this funding, rather than an occasional lesson on a horse, she can train up and learn all about horses and what it takes to look after them, and endeavour to be an accomplished horse rider.”

Application

All young people aged between 16-21 living with a physical or mental impairment in Scotland are encouraged to apply.

This includes people with autism, learning difficulties and physical disabilities, as well as those with mental health, hearing or visual impairments. Those aged 15 are also eligible to apply, with successful applicants receiving their funds when they turn 16.

To apply online email [email protected] with the subject heading ‘Online application request’ or download the application form via the ILF Scotland website at www.ilf.scot/transition-fund to apply by email or post.