Interest rising over June awards date

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June 5 is a date which Interest Link Borders very much has on its mind.

After being selected as a finalist in the 2014 Scottish Charity Awards, that’s the day when winners will be announced at a ceremony in Edinburgh’s Assembly Rooms.

Organised by the Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations (SCVO), the awards celebrate the work of charities, community groups and individuals.

Interest Link provides volunteer befriending for children, young people and adults with learning disabilities across the Borders (see photographs) through branches in Hawick, Peebles, Galashiels and Duns. It currently supports 200 befriending links.

Central Borders co-ordinator Stefanie Poletyllo said: “Our befrienders give children, young people and adults with learning disabilities their only opportunity to be in mainstream groups or one-to-one relationships with non-disabled peers of their own age-group.

“They are often the only people in a service user’s life who are there purely by choice, and they have a huge impact on their happiness, confidence, self-esteem, life skills and physical wellbeing.”