50 years ago, on the 18th January 1966, a group of Borders women sat at the kitchen table at Newhouses and formed what became the Borders Children’s Charity, to help children in need across the region.
Since then, over 150 Borderers have served as Committee members and to thank them for their support for the Charity over the years, a tea party will be held at Thirlestane Castle in April.
But another vital ingredient to the success of the Charity are those that ensure its funds are targeted directly when and where they are needed.
Every funding application the Charity receives requesting support for a vulnerable child in the Borders comes from a professional, sometimes Headteachers, Early Years workers or Health Visitors, but most often from one of the hardworking members of the Council’s Integrated Children’s Services teams.
To thank them for their contribution, the charity visited all six social work locality offices, in Duns, Galashiels, Hawick, Kelso, Peebles and Selkirk with cupcakes bearing the logo of the BCC.
Lucy Tile, chairman of the Borders Children’s Charity said “We wanted to say thank you to all the social workers who are working so hard to ensure the best possible future for the children in their care. With their input, last year we were able to assist over 650 individual children in the Borders, with help that included beds for 66 children, clothing and shoes for another 45.
Over 350 children living in poverty, chaotic, stressful or abusive circumstances or with additional needs were able to access school trips, respite holidays, sporting activities and therapy.”
Caitlin and Wendy from Integrated Children’s Service, Hawick said: “We are very grateful for the generous and helpful funding we have received from the BCC for the children in our area.”
Of course, the other key to the success of the charity has been the support of people throughout the Borders. Lucy said “For 50 years, individuals and businesses across the Borders have supported the BCC, through fundraising, donations and promotion of the charity.
“We are so grateful to everyone for their contributions. As a small, local charity, with almost no running costs, our supporters know that nearly every penny they raise stays within the Borders and goes directly to those who need it.”