GLENROTHES YMCA-YWCA is about to launch the most crucial fundraising campaign in its history.
The last couple of years has seen demand for the North Street-based charity’s services soar as families suffer in the economic downturn and struggle to cope with problems like break-ups, job losses, rising debt and home repossessions.
And now - as it marks its goden jubilee - the organisation is appealing to townsfolk for help so that it can assist others.
And as well as backing the various events planned during fundraising week, which runs for a week from Saturday, the ‘Y’ - as it is affectionately known in the town - is asking local people to pledge £2 a month.
Administrator, Brenda Bell, said “Many people have never experienced such hardship in their lives before and there has been a significant rise in the number of people approaching us in crisis.
“The biggest impact is on people who already had very close to nothing, and worse still, have no family around to help.”
‘Y’ volunteers already help to raise cash to run ’crisis support’ services, such as providing breakfasts, soup kitchens, emergency food parcels, clothing, toiletries and sleeping bags.
Monies raised allow the ‘Y’ to help people find shelter and to signpost people for advice on alcohol dependency, money management and other specialist services.
‘Y’ director, Mary Hill, said this assistance could make a huge difference to people’s lives - particularly younger people - many of whom go onto ‘give something back’.
“One young man was homeless, but we supported him for several months in our homeless accommodation,” she explained.
“He was encouraged to join a fitness programme, which led him to take up boxing.
“His gloves, boots and membership to a local boxing club were provided by a ‘Y’ special fundraising campaign, and this equipment allowed him to progress to competition stage.
“The sport taught him about nutrition, exercise, commitment, discipline, respect, initiative and team work.
“This impacted on his life and after a short time he was able to find employment and move into his own flat, unsupported.
“The ‘Y’ likes to encourage many different character-building activities
“We recognise the achievements of young people. For our ‘young boxer’ we were delighted to present him with an endeavour award at our annual general meeting.”
Mary, Brenda and all the staff and volunteers of the ‘Y’ are very grateful to the local community who respond regularly to appeals.
But Brenda concludes: “The reality is we need more in order to continue support to young people and families.”
“That’s why we are asking for people to donate just £2 per month by standing order, which will really make that difference.
More information on how you can help the “Y” can be found at: www.glenrothes-y.co.uk