Cornish charity Spectrum has thanked the Lost Gardens of Heligan and its generous festive visitors for going above and beyond to support people with autism.
It comes as Heligan donated £3,125 to Spectrum, the proceeds from two charity garden days on Boxing Day and New Year’s Day which attracted more than 6,000 visitors.
In return, Spectrum’s Rachel Brown presented Heligan with a specially-designed certificate as a thank you for helping to support people with autistic spectrum disorders.
Rachel Brown, Spectrum’s Assistant Head of Development, said: “We are so grateful for the support of our community partners like Heligan who go the extra mile, which makes it possible for us to do our work and enable people with autism to enjoy what Cornwall has to offer like everyone else.
“This very generous donation means so much to us all at Spectrum. The money will be put to good use to buy equipment, classes and initiatives to keep autistic people fit and healthy. We are walking together to keep service users healthy.
“It is part of our duty of care to ensure that service users engage in meaningful community activities.”
Spectrum was nominated to receive the money by Heligan’s accounts administrator Janet Giles, who said: “I nominated Spectrum as one of Heligan’s charities as autism has become a subject close to my heart. My grandson, although not currently on the autistic spectrum, is expected to be in the future. So many children and families live with autism and I hope that the money raised will enable Spectrum in their great work of raising awareness and providing vital care for those affected.”
Spectrum, which celebrated its 35th anniversary last year, provides residential care for adults and children, education and outreach support.
Fundraising helps considerably towards helping Spectrum’s service users. A donation of £10 can help buy sports equipment, which helps improve motor and social skills; £50 can pay for art, music or therapy sessions to promote wellbeing; £100 pays for a day at an outdoor activity centre to improve self-esteem and confidence, and £1,000 could pay for a holiday to broaden experience of life elsewhere.
Rachel added: “All donations are greatly received as it means we can support service users with the extras that we all take for granted. People with autism and learning disabilities lives are being cut short because they often can afford the equipment and opportunities to keep fit and look after themselves. We use donations to ensure individuals have a full and varied life.”
George Elworthy, Heligan’s managing director, said: “We would like to thank all our visitors and staff who have given so generously on our charity days. We know how much the fundraising means to all the charities and we are delighted to help raise the profile of the wonderful work they all do.”
Visitor raised £12,985 which will be shared equally between Spectrum, Cornwall Air Ambulance, People and Garden and the Sowenna Appeal.