May 192017
 

With thanks to Future Choices.

Future Choices, which is a local, voluntary charity based at Inchgarth Community Centre, Garthdee, supporting adults with a physical disability to gain social inclusion, has launched a new fundraiser, where everyone can get involved, to support such a vital cause.

David Forbes, Chair of the charity explained:

“One of the main jobs running a charity, is raising much needed funds to keep funding what we do within the local community”

Future Choices is in it’s 9th year now and is growing from strength to strength by continuing to reach out to more people within the community.

David added,

“I would encourage as many people to get involved, the first prize we have up for grabs is superb and it’s only £5 per number”

If you wish to support Future Choices, please follow the link https://www.justgiving.com/campaigns/charity/futurechoices/bonusball-2017

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May 122017
 

With thanks to Esther Green, Senior Account Executive, Tricker PR

Disengaged young people living in Aberdeen are being supported to reach their potential through a range of award-winning urban sports and culture programmes that have received a four figure boost from Aberdeen Asset Management’s Charitable Foundation.

Transition Extreme’s renowned youth projects combine its extreme sports and arts offering with essential skills and offer a spring board for disengaged and disadvantaged young people to move their lives onwards in a positive direction.

The donation from the Aberdeen Charity Committee of the global finance management company will support Transition Extreme in delivering its youth and community programmes like its Alternative, Outreach and Extreme Arts Academies.

The youth charity provides coaching in activities like BMX biking, skating, climbing wall, high ropes and art and design and adds in valuable life skills training, which helps increase confidence and motivation among young people who have become disengaged from traditional forms of education.

One of its longest running programmes, the Alternative Academy, works with 15-18 year olds that have become disconnected with mainstream education, training or employment. Working with agencies including social work, police and education, the Academy is designed to provide supports coaching which supports physical and mental health, complemented by soft skills workshops where employers provide support with essential skills like how to prepare for an interview, CV writing, applying for a job and fitting into a team.

Sam Begg (pictured above), fundraising manager for Transition Extreme said:

“Aberdeen Asset Management’s kind donation will help our youth work team deliver vital work and programmes tailored towards helping  disadvantaged and disengaged youngsters make positive life transitions.

“Our facility has a cool dynamic and buzz that appeals to young people who feel comfortable about coming here. As well as the sports side which is fun, we help deliver soft skills which helps towards future employability. People learn in different ways, not just sitting at a desk, and it’s encouraging to have young people come here and gain new skills. We practice what we preach as 25% of our workforce has joined us from these academies.”

Claire Drummond, head of charitable giving at Aberdeen Asset Management said:

“Transition Extreme is a well-known Aberdeen centre which offers a whole range of urban sports and is a real focus for the youth of the city.

“The programmes delivered by its Youth Work Teams are helping to build up self-belief and confidence among young people and offer an important part in the process towards helping them into further education, training or work.

“The support from our Aberdeen Charity Committee will help continue the good work of investing in positive life transitions for young people of Aberdeen.”

The Aberdeen Asset Charitable Foundation was established in 2012 to formalise and develop the Group’s charitable giving globally. The Foundation seeks partnerships with smaller charities around the world, where funds can be seen to have a meaningful and measurable impact and the firm encourages its employees to use their time and skills to support its charitable projects.

The main focus of the Foundation is around emerging markets and local communities, reflecting the desire to give back to those areas which are a key strategic focus of the business and to build on the historic pattern of giving to communities in which Aberdeen employees live and work. For more information visit http://www.aberdeen-asset.co.uk/aam.nsf/foundation/home

Transition Extreme is located at Aberdeen Beachfront and  its facilities are open to the public. As well as a range of training programmes for young people, it runs outreach  projects in Aberdeen communities.

More information is available from its website http://www.transition-extreme.com

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May 052017
 

Holiday fun at Over The Wall’s Scottish Summer Camp last year.

With thanks to Esther Green, Senior Account Executive, Tricker PR

A charity which gives children and young people living with serious health challenges a holiday to help them discover a whole new world of possibilities is laying on an extra place for a deserving North-east youngster – thanks to the support of Aberdeen Asset Management’s Charities Foundation.

Gaining £1800 from the Aberdeen charities committee has enabled Over The Wall to provide an additional place at its 2017 Scotland camp for a seriously ill child living in Aberdeenshire.

The therapeutic recreation activity camp, for children aged 8-17 with serious and life limiting illnesses, takes place at Strathallan School in Perthshire in July.

Since 1999 many of the UK’s most seriously ill children have been able to go swimming, catch their first fish, dance in the sunshine, perform centre stage and create the memories of a lifetime with Over The Wall. The self-esteem and confidence of  campers sky-rockets as they learn that they are not combating childhood diseases alone.

The small national charity provides free residential activity camps for children and their families and through participation in a proven programme of fun-filled recreational and educational activities, the camps help promote inclusion whilst developing the confidence, self-esteem, coping strategies and peer relationships of all their campers.

The mum of a teenage boy who attended last year’s Scottish camp said of the experience:

“He had an amazing time, he returned more confident, happy and relaxed. For the first time he was able to enjoy activities and forget about his illness. I am a very happy Mum!”

Julie Foster, Trusts and Foundations Fundraiser for Over The Wall said:

“The camps enable the children to reach beyond their illness to rediscover a whole new world of possibilities and we rely on donations like this one from Aberdeen Asset Management, along with volunteer support,  to help us give children a week of experiences that are memorable, exciting, fun and empowering, in a physically safe and medically sound environment.”

Claire Drummond, head of charitable giving forAberdeen Asset Management said:

“Through the support of the Aberdeen Committee we are giving a local child the chance to attend camp, create memories for a lifetime and build their self-esteem and confidence at the same time. We are proud to be able to provide support in the local community in which we operate in this way.”

Aberdeen Asset Charitable Foundation was established in 2012 to formalise and develop the Group’s charitable giving globally. The Foundation seeks partnerships with smaller charities around the world, where funds can be seen to have a meaningful and measurable impact and the firm encourages its employees to use their time and skills to support its charitable projects.

The main focus of the Foundation is around emerging markets and local communities, reflecting the desire to give back to those areas which are a key strategic focus of the business and to build on the historic pattern of giving to communities in which Aberdeen employees live and work.

For more information visit http://www.aberdeen-asset.co.uk/aam.nsf/foundation/home

For full details of  Over The Wall visit http://www.otw.org.uk

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Apr 282017
 

With thanks to Gemma Setter, PR Account Executive, Frasermedia.

Local businesses are being encouraged to get behind Aberdeenshire’s newest cycling event by showcasing the best of what the region has to offer.
Organisers of the Chapelton Bike Ride, which takes place on Sunday, 3 September, are looking to expand on last year’s event by increasing the number of stalls and activities on offer.

The inaugural Chapelton Bike Ride took place last year and welcomed hundreds of cyclists and spectators to the village of Chapelton, near Newtonhill.

The event featured stalls from local businesses such as Serenity Scented Candles, and local artist, Bee Struthers, as well as food and drink from The Bay Fish & Chips, Cav & Co and Bannerman Butchers.

Held in aid of North East Sensory Services (NESS), a charity that supports over 6,000 people with sensory impairments across the North-east, last year’s bike ride raised over £6,500 for the charity, enabling it to continue to provide life-enhancing services to people with sight and/or hearing loss. 

Alastair Struthers, sales executive at ZeroC Homes, an organiser of the event, said:

“The first ever Chapelton Bike Ride was a huge success, so we’re looking forward to making this year’s event even bigger and better, with more stalls, food stands and activities for everyone to get involved with.

“As well as raising money for NESS, we are committed to creating a sporting event for people of all ages and abilities to enjoy. Involving local businesses will help to establish the Chapelton Bike Ride as a real community event that people will continue to look forward to year after year.”

Neil Skene, fundraising co-ordinator at NESS, said:

“We’re very pleased to hear that there are plans to increase what is on offer at the next Chapelton Bike Ride, as it should encourage even more people to attend this year’s event.

“It looks set to be a very enjoyable day for all of the community and we’re very thankful to everyone who is participating and raising funds for NESS on the day.”

If you are interested in becoming a stallholder at this year’s Chapelton Bike Ride, please contact Alastair Struthers on a.struthers@zeroc.co.uk. More information about the bike ride can be found at www.chapeltonbikeride.co.uk.

Registration costs £15 per person for the 42-mile route, £5 per person for the 12-mile route, or £15 for a team of four for the 12-mile cycle. Register for the Chapelton Bike Ride at https://www.q-buster.co.uk/chapelton.

North East Sensory Services (NESS) promotes the needs of people with a sight or hearing loss.   

NESS supports people with serious sight or hearing loss to overcome practical and emotional challenges and achieve independence.   

Formerly Grampian Society for the Blind (GSB), North East Sensory Services (NESS) works with over 6,000 people with a sensory impairment in Aberdeen, Aberdeenshire, Moray, Dundee, Angus and Perth & Kinross.   

Awards:   

2016: Winner, IIP Award Excellence in Third Sector   
Finalist Elevator Awards and Trend Awards   
2015: Winner, Elevator Award, Winner, Trend Award 

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Apr 202017
 

With thanks to Ian McLaren, PR account manager, Innes Associates.

Michelle Ferguson, Cash for Kids charity manager.

An Aberdeen-based children’s charity has distributed over £17,500 of funding to 24 families and community groups to improve the lives of children living in north-east Scotland.
Cash for Kids, which supports sick, disabled and disadvantaged children living in Aberdeen and Aberdeenshire, has made the awards as part of its quarterly grant funding programme.

The programme’s broad remit ensures the charity is able to fulfil a diverse range of applications each year, some of which are not eligible for funding from other sources.

Two of the beneficiaries in the recent funding round are the Community Resources Hub at Aboyne Academy and local charity KidsOut – both provide activities for children with physical and learning disabilities.

The Community Resources Hub at Aboyne Academy caters for children with medium to severe and complex educational needs.
Unable to participate in mainstream education, they are taught a life skills orientated curriculum that meets their individual needs. The hub has been granted over £300 to give the children a one-day sailing session at Loch of Skene with Aberdeenshire Sailing Trust.

This session will allow the children to sample a new activity and develop their self-esteem and personal and social skills.

KidsOut is a local charity run by 17 Rotary clubs based in Aberdeen and the surrounding area.

The charity has received £3,500 to help stage its annual fun day at Craibstone Estate. Last year, around 600 children with disabilities from 35 local primary schools attended the event and enjoyed a range of activities and experiences. The funding will be used to help cover the cost of transporting the children to the event in June.

Cash for Kids distributes grant funding at the end of January, April, July and October each year, with applications assessed by its board. All applications must be endorsed by a third party, such as a social worker or health visitor, and applications for the next funding round must be submitted by Wednesday, 19 April.

Last month, in order to help fulfil future applications, Cash for Kids launched a major appeal to raise £50,000. The 500 Faces campaign looks to recruit 500 people from Aberdeen and Aberdeenshire who will each commit to raise £100 for the charity by the end of December. A number of tradespeople, schoolchildren and local shops have already signed up to the initiative.

Michelle Ferguson, Cash for Kids charity manager, said:

“Cash for Kids’ quarterly grant funding programme is a central and important part of what the charity does. We look to support as diverse a range of requests as possible each quarter and encourage applications from across the region.

“All of the money Cash for Kids raises is distributed locally. It is always great to assist projects such as those run by Aboyne Academy and KidsOut that provide disabled children with fantastic new experiences that can help with their development.

“The grant programme gives families and community groups access to a source of funding that can support the purchase of items that are often not eligible for funding through other sources. For some families that can mean facilitating the purchase of specialist equipment to improve the quality of life of their sick or disabled child.”

To register to take part in Cash for Kids’ 500 Faces fundraising initiative, visit www.northsound1.com/faces.

Cash for Kids is Northsound Radio’s listeners’ charity. It makes grants to individuals, families, children’s groups, organisations and projects throughout the Northsound transmission area. All money is raised locally and spent locally to benefit local disabled and disadvantaged children and young people under 18.

More information on Cash for Kids can be found at www.northsound1.com/charity, or telephone 01224 337010.

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Apr 012017
 

With thanks to Future Choices.

Local voluntary charity Future Choices, which supports disabled adults gain social inclusion, have had the help of a new volunteer in their bid to attract more young people to get involved on a voluntary basis.

Lewis Bannerman takes the lead role in the Charities new promotional video, which is telling the story of what Future Choices is all about and how people can get involved.

David Forbes, Chairman explained:

“Having Lewis involved with this exciting project was so amazing, to see someone young and energised and happy to help should be an inspiration to all, and show the public that not all young people are “bad””

Diane Bannerman, Lewis’s Mother said:

“As Lewis’s mother, im bursting with pride that he has had the opportunity to participate in a lead role aiming to inspire other people, particularly the young generation to help out good causes.”

Watch the promotional video.

The Charity is in it’s 9th year and is looking for not only Volunteers but also Volunteer Drivers, to help keep their 2 buses on the road.

Can you help support Future Choices? check out www.future-choices.org.uk or email info@future-choices.org.uk

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Apr 012017
 

Regulars at a popular Aberdeen bar have answered a call to raise thousands of pounds for a local children’s charity. With thanks to Ian McLaren, PR account manager, Innes Associates.

During 2016, customers of McNasty’s on Summer Street dug deep to raise over £5,000 for north-east charity Cash for Kids.

The bar’s owners, Stephen and Linda Taylor, were keen to once again support the charity which works to improve the lives of sick, disabled and disadvantaged children living in Aberdeen and Aberdeenshire.

This contribution follows £4,000 handed over to the charity last year as a result of fundraising during 2015.

Central to McNasty’s annual fundraising initiative is a fortnightly quiz that attracts around 15 teams. The quizzes are set by pub regulars Barry Cooke and Iain Sluyter, something the duo have done in their spare time for the past seven years.

In addition to the fortnightly quiz, Barry and his friend Ronnie Falconer, assisted by the team at McNasty’s, have organised a number of other fundraising events at the bar. This has included race nights, raffles and band nights – at which local bands take to the stage free of charge. Amongst the bands that have performed are The Capollos and Winston Smith.

Co-owner of McNasty’s, Stephen Taylor, said:

“All of our customers and suppliers have once again got behind our fundraising and shown real generosity. To have increased the amount we handed over to Cash for Kids compared to the previous year is fantastic. It is great to know that the money will be used locally to make a real difference to the lives of children across the north-east.”

Quiz organiser Barry Cooke, who works as an operations support coordinator for Apache North Sea, said:

“The popularity of the quiz grows year-on-year, meaning that the amount we raise from it for charity also increases. Although each quiz takes time to set, the reward is in knowing how much the charity, and those that it supports, benefits.”

Cash for Kids will use all of the money donated by McNasty’s to help fulfil applications to its quarterly grant funding programme. Grants are made to individuals, families and community groups in order to help improve the quality of children’s lives. Applications for the next round of grant funding must be submitted by Friday, 14 April and endorsed by a third party such as a social worker or health visitor.

Cash for Kids charity manager Michelle Ferguson said:

“We’re very grateful to the customers and staff at McNasty’s who helped to raise this brilliant amount during 2016. Businesses committing to this type of fundraising, with the support of their customers, is very important for charities and can help to make a real difference to the lives of the people we support. In Cash for Kids’ case it is the thousands of sick, disabled or disadvantaged children that live in Aberdeen and Aberdeenshire.

“The pub quiz at McNasty’s might not be the easiest, but Barry, Ian and the team at the pub certainly make sure it is a fun and sociable night.”

Cash for Kids is Northsound Radio’s listeners’ charity. It makes grants to individuals, families, children’s groups, organisations and projects throughout the Northsound transmission area. All money is raised locally and spent locally to benefit local disabled and disadvantaged children and young people under 18. More information on Cash for Kids can be found at www.northsound1.com/cashforkids, or telephone 01224 337010.

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Mar 172017
 

With thanks to Ian McLaren, PR account manager, Innes Associates.

A north-east charity has launched a major appeal to raise £50,000 that will be used to support the region’s sick, disabled and disadvantaged children.
Cash for Kids is looking to recruit 500 people from across Aberdeen and Aberdeenshire to be part of its 500 Faces fundraising campaign.

Each person that signs up will commit to raising £100 this year in order that the local children’s charity’s appeal target is reached.

Tradespeople, work colleagues, groups of friends, families and school classes are all encouraged to take part. It is hoped that the option of spreading fundraising over the course of a year will attract a number of participants.

All of the money from the 500 Faces appeal will be used to help fulfil applications to Cash for Kids’ unique grant funding programme. The charity provides grant funding to individuals, families and community groups across Aberdeen and Aberdeenshire on a quarterly basis to help improve the quality of children’s lives.

For some families the grant programme is the only option open to them to fund the purchase of specialist equipment for their children, as often there are no other funding mechanisms. Each application made to the grant programme has to be endorsed by a third party such as a social worker or health visitor.

The 500 Faces appeal is taking place to ensure that as many grant applications as possible are fulfilled each quarter.  Currently, the total value of grant applications received by Cash for Kids outweighs the amount donated by the public and business community. The deadline for submitting applications for the next round of grant funding is Friday, 14 April.

Participants have nine months to reach their £100 goal – which equates to £2.50 a week – and can be as creative as they wish with their fundraising. Money can be raised through one-off challenges, a series of events or regular weekly or monthly donations.

People are expected to fundraise by undertaking sponsored running, cycling, swimming and even slimming challenges, beard shavings and leg waxing, or simply foregoing a weekly takeaway coffee and donating the equivalent value. For local businesses and tradespeople it may be as simple as donating their tips or a percentage of a month’s takings to the appeal.

Michelle Ferguson (pictured), Cash for Kids charity manager, said:

“The 500 Faces campaign is a really fun way for people to get involved with Cash for Kids and raise money throughout the year. There is real flexibility in how individuals can fundraise and no limit to how much each person raises.

“We hope that people across the region get behind the appeal and that all of those who sign up can help motivate one another in achieving their goals. The appeal website has individual and collective totalisers which should help to do this – they’re a bit like high-tech versions of the Blue Peter totalisers. 

“We are looking forward to our participants sharing their fundraising ideas, which will no doubt create some friendly competition.

“When £100 is broken down across the nine months to £2.50 a week, it is a relatively small amount and a manageable fundraising target. The impact that £100 can have on the lives of sick, disabled and disadvantaged children living in our communities is transformational. 

“From purchasing bread for breakfast clubs in deprived areas, to providing equipment for art therapy classes for disabled children, each donation does make a real difference.”

To register, visit www.northsound1.com/faces.

Cash for Kids is Northsound Radio’s listeners’ charity. It makes grants to individuals, families, children’s groups, organisations and projects throughout the Northsound transmission area.  All money is raised locally and spent locally to benefit local disabled and disadvantaged children and young people under 18. More information on Cash for Kids can be found at www.northsound1.com/charity, or telephone 01224 337010.

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Mar 102017
 

With thanks to Ian McLaren, PR account manager, Innes Associates.

Sick, disabled and disadvantaged children living in Aberdeen and Aberdeenshire will benefit after six local couples said ‘I do’ to raising thousands of pounds for charity for the chance to win a dream wedding.
The brides and grooms to be were taking part in Aberdeen-based children’s charity Cash for Kids’ annual Win Your Wedding fundraising competition.

On offer for the couple who raised the most money was an exclusive wedding package at a leading four-star Aberdeenshire hotel. 

In total, the six duos raised £57,191.20 in just two weeks. They took on a wide range of fundraising challenges, including a five-a-side football tournament, pub quizzes, coffee mornings, auctions, bucket collections, a duck race, bag-packing and sponsored leg waxing and beard-shavings.

Raising the most money were Ellon couple Natasha Matthew and Grant Reid who collected £12,197.83. The reward for their efforts was a dream wedding day at the award-winning Meldrum Country House Hotel. The winners’ wedding package, which is worth around £25,000, includes a reception in the Oldmeldrum hotel’s new ballroom, which opened last year.

Also included in the wedding package are venue décor, a wedding dress, grooms’ wear, flowers, wedding rings, health, fitness and beauty packages, along with wedding cars, photography and childcare for the big day. All of the items have been donated by local businesses.

Natasha and Grant, who met at school and got engaged eight years ago, say they’re really proud of their achievement. Natasha said:

“Grant and I have really enjoyed raising the money for Cash for Kids, but we could not have done it without all of our supporters who have been so generous with their time and money. We really can’t thank everyone enough and we can’t wait to start planning our big day as soon as possible.”

Over the past six years the Win Your Wedding contest has seen couples who are planning to tie the knot raise over £185,000 for Cash for Kids. 

The charity provides grant funding to individuals, families and community groups on a quarterly basis and all of the money that the competition raises is used to help fulfil these grant applications. The deadline for submitting applications for the next round of grant funding is Friday, 14 April.

Michelle Ferguson, Cash for Kids charity manager, said:

“We are very grateful to our couples who have all made such an amazing effort to collectively raise more than £57,000. Our thanks must also go to everyone who has helped them raise this phenomenal amount of money by taking part in their fundraising initiatives and donating to Cash for Kids.

“Every penny that the couples raised is distributed to individual children, families and community groups in Aberdeen and Aberdeenshire, making a huge difference to their lives. The couples’ hard work and enthusiasm has been second to none.

“The support and generosity shown by the local businesses who helped us put together this fantastic package for Win Your Wedding is very much appreciated.

“Meldrum House is a stunning setting for a wedding and the hotel’s involvement has certainly helped generate interest in the contest. Without the support of all the businesses, we would not be able to run this competition or assist all the children that we do through our unique grant scheme.”

Cash for Kids is Northsound Radio’s listeners’ charity. It makes grants to individuals, families, children’s groups, organisations and projects throughout the Northsound transmission area. All money is raised locally and spent locally to benefit local disabled and disadvantaged children and young people under 18.

More information on Cash for Kids can be found at www.northsound1.com/cashforkids, or telephone 01224 337010.

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Feb 022017
 

This driver stopped in the marked disabled bay while he loaded a Christmas tree while two cars with disabled badges had to move on.

By Mark MC.

“I’ll just be two ticks!” A not uncommon response to someone parking where they shouldn’t, but what if that is a disabled parking bay?

The Court has recently ruled on wheelchairs over prams on buses; but is this the right way to go?

Has it gone far enough?

Even now the media and people appear to have different views on what the ruling stated so what is going on?

What has happened to the old-fashioned courtesy, of giving up a seat for someone in more need than yourself….is chivalry dead?

Most of us will get old, some will become disabled, some of us are already there; so should we expect ‘special treatment’, preferential treatment?

This important issue covers far more than just buses or parking bays; there appears to be a basic disregard for people that require more, even if that doesn’t actually cost anything just, simply taking up space that could be used by someone else: the selfish gene?

Unfair appraisal? While it is true that many people would happily give up their seat, how many of those people would take a disabled parking space? The concept behind the aging Goofy cartoon behind the wheel springs to mind; where the perfect gentleman Goofy changes like Jekyll and Hyde.

Whatever your viewpoint there is sufficient concern to raise the question, what is going on? Why do so many feel that it is OK to keep a marked disabled seat or park in a disabled parking space without authority?

These actions can have severe effects on those that need them.

A tent display, clearly far more important than disabled people.

There are too may conditions to list here but lets just look at one, a more generic situation of chronic pain. Chronic pain affects hundreds of thousands of people; that is a pain that is constant over time, it might effect standing, walking, even sitting.

Many sufferers still try to maintain what is as near ‘normal’ lifestyle as they can but in order to do so they need just a little extra help, and that might be in the form of a specialised seat or parking space near to a shop, chemist or doctors. Is that really too much to ask?

A seat and/or a parking space, reserved for someone that needs it, in order for them to be part of the community without being an extra burden?

In the case of the bus court case it should never have gone that far, the bus driver already had the ability to sort it out; the current situation does little to help, the driver can simply wait for others on the bus to get angry about being held up; causing further animosity to either the disabled, elderly or pram pusher.

In the case of the selfish driver taking a disabled bay, even if just for a short time may have caused someone that needs that space to drive on; perhaps even to return home unable to get their shopping or prescription, because their pain to just too much for them to wait or to keep driving around looking for what is often far too few disabled parking spaces close to where they need to be.

Tackle these people at your peril; as even a ‘nice’ approach can be taken as an affront on their liberty, or at least that can be the impression assumed by the verbal abuse or even violent response.

Some countries don’t suffer from the same issues.

Some countries carry real fines, big fines if people disobey, plus they have law enforcers willing to issue fines. In a few countries the locals would never even dream of taking a disabled space. How have they done it?

It would be nice if legislation was not required, but in our current modern selfish age, the situation is unlikely to improve without a big stick….lets hope those people wont need it to get around!

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