Young people living with learning disabilities and Autism in Westminster will benefit from donations raised by the local MP taking part in the 10for10 challenge.
Nickie Aiken, Member of Parliament for the Cities of London and Westminster, has signed up to do the 10for10 challenge (10 walks of 10,000 steps), and has chosen to support local charity Caxton Youth Organisation.
The charity provides a specialist youth service for local young people with learning disabilities. They have a youth club in Pimlico and their own island in Surrey where they offer residential trips.
Young people aged 6 to 25 can take part in activities such as dance, cooking and art and make friends, while their families get much needed respite.
“I’m looking forward to taking part in the #10for10challenge, which was set up by fellow MP Guy Opperman after he collapsed from a brain tumour in the House of Commons. Not only does this incredible event raise awareness of brain tumours, but it gives us all the chance to raise money for fantastic charities across the country.
“I’m doing my little bit and I’m on track to complete my 100,000 steps. Any donations I receive will go to the amazing Caxton Youth Organisation. The team are doing an incredible job for people with learning disabilities and they have seen demand for their services increase massively during the pandemic.
“I have chosen to fundraise for Caxton because I know how important their work is and the huge benefit it provides for the children and young people they support. I know from speaking to parents of children with learning difficulties and autism that they fight every step of the way to ensure they secure the support and education their children need and deserve.
“I hope my challenge will help shine a light on the amazing support these families give their children but also how important it is that we support them ourselves as a society but also as individuals.”
Rachel Akehurst, from Caxton Youth Organisation, said:
“Following a year of lockdown and shielding, many young people with disabilities are feeling frightened about leaving the house and being in close proximity to others. COIVID-19 has had a negative impact on their independence, their communication skills, and their mental health.
“We’re delighted to have Nickie’s support in raising funds to meet the 300% increase in the demand for our services. Funds raised though Nickie’s #10for10Challenge will help the charity to provide online youth work sessions for young people who are struggling with the ‘new normal’, in addition to its face-to face youth club.”
Nickie also hopes that taking part in the challenge will help her get fitter. She said:
“Many of us have walked more over the last year as it was often the only exercise we could do. I think it is so important to get out and exercise for our physical and mental health so being able to undertake ten 10,000 step walks will be a challenge but definitely a worthwhile one.”
You can support Nickie and Caxton Youth Organisation here. Donations are eligible for gift aid.