AN APPEAL to raise £3.4m has been launched to build a much-needed respite and drop-in centre.
Smile Support and Care wants to build the centre next to Rachel Madocks School, in Cowplain, to provide support to disabled children and young people across Hampshire and West Sussex.
The appeal coincides with the charity’s 18th anniversary and chief executive Stuart Baldwin is calling on the public and businesses to dig deep and make the dream a reality.
He said: ‘We believe there is an overwhelming need in the region for a short-break and drop-in centre designed to suit the needs of severely disabled children and young adults.
‘Locally, there is a need for drop-in facilities for young people with a disability and the centre will, in addition, welcome individuals day to day and run a daily activity programme for individuals to take part in as and when they choose.
‘The centre will also provide individuals and their families with a place to enjoy a holiday together.’
One organisation already pledging its support is Basepoint which has adopted Smile Support and Care as its charity of the year.
The firm, which runs business and innovation centres, has been selling balloons from each of its eight centres all month for a charity balloon race.
Balloons are available from the centres in Harts Farm Way, Havant, Aerodrome Road, Gosport or Waterberry Drive, Waterlooville.
The balloons will be launched from the proposed site in Eagle Avenue on Saturday, with the owner of the one that travels the furthest winning a prize.
If you would like to take part in fundraising for the charity call (023) 8061 6215 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. To donate go to smilesupport.org.uk.