Amaze launches 25th birthday fundraising campaign

Posted On 28 Nov 2022 at 2:59 pm

The Brighton-based charity Amaze is celebrating 25 years of supporting families with disabled children in Sussex by launching a new fundraising campaign.

A birthday fundraiser that aims to raise £5,000 to support disabled young people with careers advice was kicked off at a free family event on Saturday (26 November).

Local families with disabled children enjoyed inclusive activities and entertainment from Freedom Leisure, Animazing, Parable Dance, Mindful Warriors and Tony Charles magic at Moulsecoomb Leisure Centre.

Amaze patron and world-renowned children’s author Julia Donaldson was also on hand to sign books and help raise funds.

Amaze chief executive Sally Polanski said: “We were so delighted to celebrate our 25th birthday with so many families from across Brighton and Hove and East Sussex.

“They are the beating heart of Amaze and having so many of them in one place, together, having fun was really special.

“We were also very blessed to have our patron, Julia Donaldson, there signing some of her brilliant books. Families were absolutely thrilled to meet Julia in person.

“The event was a great way to launch our 25th birthday fundraising campaign which we hope will raise £5,000 to help more disabled young people get specialist careers support.

“We are selling a brilliant 25th birthday cookbook, Amazing Bakes, with cake recipes submitted by local families with disabled children, as well as greeting cards and tote bags designed by the young people with SEND (special educational needs and disabilities) who attend our Amazing Futures groups.”

Since 1997, 25,000 families have been supported, including with assistance to make 5,300 benefits claims, helping families to obtain £55 million in disability benefits.

The Amazing Futures Careers service provides tailored support to disabled young people and runs a paid internship to plan and deliver Amaze’s activities.

Demand for the service is higher than ever as disabled young people struggle with the additional career pressures caused by covid and the cost of living crisis.

Eliph, who is autistic and has health issues and mild learning difficulties, volunteered with Amaze then became an Amazing Futures intern.

Eliph said: “Doing the internship massively improved my confidence. Eventually I got on to a foundation degree course while I was working at Amaze and I was able to go to university which I’m doing now.

“Without Amaze, I think I’d probably still be living at home with my parents. I probably wouldn’t be doing that much. I’d definitely be a lot more down.”

To learn more about the careers fundraising campaign or to donate, click here.

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