Scotframe leads a list of generous donors to create a safe space for vulnerable children and young adults
It was a particularly special birthday party that Bob Davis held for his 26-year-old daughter Emily in December 2015 – a brilliant disco evening in the new safe play space that he and his team at Scottish charity Play Alloa have just created.
It was special for a number of reasons: Emily has had severe learning difficulties and mobility issues since birth; and companies such as Scotframe, the UK’s leading full kit timber frame manufacturer, and many others have pulled together to build the new haven for her and children who face similar challenges.
The new space at Play Alloa, the leading provider of play and social opportunities for children and adults with disabilities and additional support needs within Clackmannanshire, measures a generous 10 metres by 5 metres and is warm, secure and comfortable.
Bob, who moved to Scotland 25 years ago to find good schooling for Emily, said: “We call the new space our Wee Big Build. It is used by all age groups in Play Alloa, but for the young adults, it is like a common room at school, where they are in charge.
“Donors have been more than forthcoming and we have been able to provide them with table football, a pool table and a wide screen TV so that they can use their wii and computer games.”
Bob, who is chairman of Play Alloa, is also membership manager of the Structural Timber Association and he used his connections within the construction industry in Scotland to make the dream come true for the 145 families in the area which the charity supports.
He said: “We moved into our new premises in Broad Street in Alloa, supported by the local authority, and the premises included a walled garden area. We needed more private space for young adults, somewhere they could decorate themselves and chill out.
“I spoke to a local architect and he designed a building which I submitted for planning permission. Then I took it to Scotframe, with whom I have worked in the past, and they immediately offered to provide the kit for the building for free.
“That was the catalyst, the key if you like, and once Scotframe were on board the offers of help in creating the play space poured in.”
“Scotframe even supplied the final air test which buildings of this nature need on completion – and, needless to say, it passed with flying colours.”
He said that Play Alloa now has groups for young adults, teenagers, very young children and, most recently, for mothers and babies. There is now a queue of parents of children with particular needs who are keen to hold parties in the play space.
“When you have a child with say, autism, or attention deficit issues, the fact is that you just stop going to public places for events such as family celebrations. This wonderful new building provides a space where people can meet and interact in comfort and safety.
“I can’t thank Scotframe enough for starting the ball rolling on this, and all the others who gave so unstintingly of their time, skills and money. The children and young adults of Play Alloa are in their debt.”