Belfast Telegraph

Monday 24 November 2014

Co-op spreads a little sunshine with minibus

Pupils from Belfast’s Fleming Fulton School were overjoyed to be receiving a long awaited Variety Club Sunshine Coach this month.

The 13-seater minibus has been sponsored by The Co-operative.

This special school caters for 140 children and young people aged 3 - 19 years with difficulties including cerebral palsy, spina bifida, muscular dystrophy, and other more complex disabilities.

The new 13-seater bus, complete with tail-lift will be used to integrate the young people as much as possible into the community by making regular visits to museums, shops, art centres, and other schools as an essential part of the curriculum.

They also operate a junior and youth Phab Club two nights a week as well as Saturday morning which will use the bus on a regular basis.

John McNeill, The Co-operative’s Regional Operations Director for Scotland and Northern Ireland said: “As a community retailer, we are really proud to have been able to sponsor this coach. It’s fantastic that the pupils will be able to get out and about in the local area, learning new social skills and building their confidence.”

The Variety Club’s Chairman of The Sunshine Coach Committee Malcolm Brenner said: “Since the first in 1962, we have donated over 5,000 Sunshine Coaches. Variety Club’s minibuses ensure children can interact with the world around them in an environment of fun, entertainment and education whilst ensuring our most precious cargo is transported as safely as possible.

“With the support of organisations like The Co-operative, the Variety Club can continue to highlight that being disabled or disadvantaged need not be a barrier to achieving the most |out of life.”

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