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Maidenhead-based autism charity bidding for £50,000 funding prize

A charity that provides support to people affected by autism is urging residents and local businesses to vote for it as it bids to win nearly £50,000 in funding from The People’s Project.

Stand Out For Autism (SOFA) already runs an autism-friendly football school at Maidenhead United’s football ground on Sundays for children aged four to 16.

Founder Holly Clarke said the additional funding will help to continue the football school along with starting a new youth club, drama group, after school clubs and social evenings.

She said: “I started SOFA not long after receiving my son Harry’s autism diagnosis.

“My vision was to not only raise awareness and acceptance but to build a community that could support, provide information and create activities for families like mine.”

On Monday, Stand Out For Autism’s campaign was filmed by ITV News and featured on the programme later that evening.

Holly added: “We really need people to get voting and show their support.”

Stand Out For Autism is one of five charities in with the chance to win the award.

The People’s Projects is a partnership between the Big Lottery Fund, ITV, STV and The National Lottery that gives the public a say in awarding National Lottery funding to local projects across the UK.

SOFA will also be raising awareness around the town until voting closes, starting with a circus-themed fund-raising night at The Bell pub in King Street tomorrow (Friday) from 5.30pm.

It will also be at:

  • The Nicholsons Centre in Maidenhead town centre and on Marlow FM on Saturday;
  • At Maidenhead Rugby Club in Braywick Park on April 1;
  • At Eat on Maidenhead High Street, on Sunday, April 2.

You can watch the film and vote at www.thepeoplesprojects.org.uk. Voting closes at noon on Monday, April 3.

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