A CAMPAIGN has been launched by a Portsmouth charity to change the future for people with Down syndrome.
Portsmouth Down Syndrome Association needs to raise £600,000 over the next year to cover the cost of its new building in Old Commercial Road.
Following the campaign launching last week, the charity is off to a great start with £26,000 raised already thanks to the generosity of supporters, and plenty of plans for fundraisers to hold over the year.
This campaign comes after the news that charity founder Rachael Ross was made an MBE in the Queen’s Birthday Honours.
Trustee and development officer Ken Ross said: ‘Unfortunately the centre we’re in at the moment is limited to two rooms to carry out all the therapy, social outreach and other services.
‘We wanted to find a building to tick all of the boxes for us. We need to create a bigger body of people so we can start to support even further.
‘We are really excited about it, we think it is something that will create more opportunities for people with Down syndrome.’
The road around the new building is closed to traffic at both ends, so it will be safer for children using the services but the building itself needs renovation work and complete refurbishment.
Charity organisers are calling for the community to get involved and raise funds to help the move go as smoothly as possible.
Ken said: ‘People may not be able to write a cheque for £1,000 but they may be able to sell some things at a car boot sale or do a sponsored run or bake some cakes.
‘We have had some great support already. It's exciting, we see it as a focal point. People can come and visit the centre when it is open and take some real pride in thinking they made this happen.
‘Every single person who donates will be making a difference to change the future for people with Down syndrome and it will make a positive difference to the whole community as well.’
To donate to the new centre building campaign, visit uk.virginmoneygiving.com/fund/newcentrebuildingcampaign