Disability Huntingdonshire

 

 

History of DISH

 

Disability Information Service Huntingdonshire (DISH) was set up in 1991 by the Huntingdonshire Coalition of Disabled People, in response to a need expressed by disabled people and their carers to have a specialist information and advice service on all
aspects of disability.

 

Mark Griffen

Trustee: Mark Griffen

DISH was set up with initial funding provided by Cambridgeshire Social Services and the Opportunities for Volunteering Scheme (a national government initiative administered by RADAR). In October 1991 the service began operating from the Chrysalis Centre, a Social Services Day Centre, in Huntingdon with one member of staff and a team of volunteers. As demand for its services grew, DISH moved in 1993 to the Disability Resource Centre at Papworth Everard and by 1995 additional drop-in centres at Huntingdon, St. Neots and St.Ives were in operation in addition to a home visiting scheme. In 1996 a representation service was made available to people needing assistance at Disability Appeal Tribunals. In 1999 DISH was awarded a grant of £90,000 from the National Lotteries Charities Board, now known as the Community Fund, for a three-year welfare benefits project.

 

DISH was awarded charity status in 1997 and had written into DISH’s constitution that 51% of trustees should be either disabled people, carers or have strong connections within the disability field. We still keep to this and can say that 63% of all trustees, staff and volunteers are carers or disabled themselves.