The Athlone Trust CIO is a small but vital UK charity that provides financial assistance to adopted children with special needs, allowing them to get the help they could not otherwise access. Sadly we have more requests for help than we have funds to meet them, so every penny really does help and is hugely appreciated.
The objects of The Athlone Trust (registered charity no. 277065), which was formed in 1978 with assets of the former National Childrens Adoption Association, are to provide financial assistance for adopted children and their families in the UK who are experiencing hardship. For our Privacy Notice please see http://www.athlonetrust.com/general-privacy-notice
in the last decade, we have received many applications to assist parents of adopted children with serious disabilities such as Asperger's Syndrome or Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), often as a result of maltreatment or neglect before they were adopted. Indeed the funds are now invariably directed to help pay for school places in the private sector, where classes are small, so that children with special educational needs can receive appropriate individual help in cases where the fees cannot or will not be paid for by local authorities. In many instances the children are from single parent families where the parent, usually the mother, has decided to devote her life to caring for families of siblings with disturbed behavioural conditions.
Sadly the demand for assistance from the Trust continues unabated, In the academic year 2017/18, the Trustees paid out grants of £25,000, for the year 2018/19, grants of £25,775 will have been paid and for the year 2019/20 the Trustees are already committed to grants of £29,530, bringing the total commitment over the two academic years to 2020 to £55,305. Further applications for grants are already being received for our consideration in November.
This level of commitment has only been made possible by the generosity of donors in response to the fund raising appeals through the annual sponsored British 10K London Run since 2008, a very substantial legacy in 2011 and two smaller legacies left by former Trustees in 2014 and 2016 respectively. As a consequence, between 2007 and 2017 the available income, after administration and investment management expenses, increased from £6492 in 2007 to a peak of £23,336 in 2017, enabling grants awarded towards the fees of special schools to rise, with the aid of capital, from £6,738 in 2007 to £25,468 in the year 2017. In the year 2018 the income has declined to £15,168 but the grants required to be made have increased and the demand for financial assistance shows no sign of diminishing. The Trustees receive no remuneration and administration expenses are kept to a minimum.
Funds are therefore desperately needed to allow the Trustees not only to carry out our present commitments without dissipating much capital but also to meet the continuing anticipated demand from adopted children with special needs. Given the Government’s report in March 2016 “Adoption – A vision for change “ and its proposals for fast tracking the process of adoption of children in care, as well as the 4 per cent increase in looked after children (including adoption) between 2016/2017 and 2017/2018 (according to the Department for Education’s figures issued in November 2018), it is clear that the Trust’s assistance is going to be more urgently needed than ever before. All donations however small will be most gratefully received.