The series of popular monthly discos held in Forfar for adults with learning difficulties is the latest recipient of the £250 sponsorship cheque from the Forfar Roof Truss Company.
Run in conjunction with the ‘Dispatch and Herald’, the award was presented on Thursday to organiser Alexander (Ackie) McGregor.
Ackie started the discos, held on the first Wednesday of every month in The Plough, with the help of his colleague Julie Wilson.
Both are support workers for adults with learning difficulties who recognised there are not enough social activities in the Angus area that cater specifically for adults aged over 18 years with learning difficulties.
Ackie said: “The disco is held at the Plough Inn where hosts Ian and Diane are very supportive and offer a safe environment. Entry is £3 (all carers are free) and I try to keep the costs as low as possible for those who attend. Unfortunately, this sometimes means I have to cover the costs myself as I have to pay the shortfall.
“I try to make the disco/karaoke nights as varied as possible having 60s, 70s and 80s nights.
“I also hold special Hallowe’en, Easter and Christmas nights where the adults are encouraged to come in fancy dress.
“I have also had country and western nights and tartan nights. These theme nights are especially popular as when we hold them I make them a bit more special as I put on a buffet and hold a raffle to add to the fun of the night.”
Ackie is hoping to develop the disco nights further but requires extra funding and publicity to reach out to those who are unaware that they are held monthly.
He continued: “The disco is becoming more popular and is steadily growing in numbers. My main aim is to create an environment where any adult with learning difficulties can come along and feel free to express themselves through dancing or singing on the karaoke without feeling self-conscious. It is also a great way for them to meet and make new friends.”
“My dream is to be able to hold an X-Factor type talent show specifically for adults with learning difficulties so they can have the chance to show off their talents.
“I feel that, for the people who attend the discos, it is an opportunity for them to socialise and have fun and enjoy themselves. This is something the able bodied amongst us take for granted.”
If you or your organisation could benefit from a £250 boost then apply in writing to ‘Forfar Roof Truss Company Sponsorship Project, c/o Angus County Press Ltd., 117 to 119 Castle Street, Forfar, DD8 3AH. Please provide relevant information on how the £250 could be used and a contact number.