A Borders charity which supports mothers diagnosed with postnatal depression has had its future secured thanks to grant funding of £150,000 this week.
The payout from the Big Lottery Fund will help finance PND Borders, a Galashiels-based counselling and therapy service, for a further three years.
The charity, founded in 2011, can now continue and expand their range of therapeutic services for women across the Borders by increasing their opening hours by at least one half day a week.
For PND Borders chairwoman Barbara Wright the financial security comes as a “huge relief”.
She said: “It’s good for all of our clients to know that we are going to be here. All the staff know they have secure jobs and we can now let all the doctors and health visitors who refer mums to us know we are still here.
“The award of this grant secures the future of the service for the next three years, and will allow us to grow and develop to benefit new mothers and their families across the Borders.”
The charity’s team of nine trustees, four staff and around 10 volunteers offers support to mothers suffering from postnatal depression through counselling, individual and group art therapy and infant massage, as well as support to partners through a fathers’ group.
By increasing their opening hours, the team hopes to significantly reduce increasing waiting lists and times, helping more mothers with early intervention and prevention.
Mrs Wright added: “We typically see about 50 mums each year and that is out of a potential client base of more than 100 statistically for the Borders.
“Our budget is between £70,000 and £80,000 a year just to offer a two-day service, so we rely on grants, but it is becoming more and more difficult to raise that money through small amounts. We have not received anything like this scale of money before.”
Big Lottery Fund Scotland chairwoman, Maureen McGinn, added: “The funding will make a big difference where it is needed most and I wish PND Borders every success as it goes on to develop and expand its project for the benefit of their local community.”