At Abernethy we are facing a real and present risk to our sustainability, like many other organisations of our kind. With guest groups unable to attend, we are in a phase of rescheduling where possible, and refunding if not. We are therefore facing the loss of at least £600,000 of income, and even with furloughing staff and other cost saving measures, this is essentially the amount of money we need to raise to survive.
Therefore, I am writing to propose that we unrestrict all monies given to the Courtyard Project, and redirect them to general funds. Under the guidance of the Scottish Charity Register, we are therefore proposing that unless objections are raised by donors before 20 April, we will unrestrict donations so far, and contract those having pledged funds, to do the same.
We take this step facing the sobering reality of current circumstances, and the likelihood of even greater financial challenges ahead. In order that we continue to serve guests, and share the blessing of our places and purpose, we ask that you would support us in this way.
Over the past four years, we have been working towards a construction project to provide more modern facilities to replace the ageing chalets at Abernethy Nethybridge, as well as better access and accommodation for disabled guests; more en-suite rooms and full size beds to serve a fuller diversity in age and type of guests; better communal spaces; improvements to rooms and stores that support our adventure programme.
Since taking up the CEO post in the summer last year I have been working with the Abernethy trustees and others to have a renewed look at the proposed plans and whether they still reflect the changing needs that we see.
Although funds approaching three-quarters of the target have been identified, pledged or given, we have now agreed ways in which the plans should significantly change to more accurately provide these refreshed outcomes, but with a fuller effect on the Nethybridge centre as a whole, not only a new wing.
In four years we’ve learned significant amounts about changing patterns of our guests, as well as improving our overall centre. Instead of a single ‘courtyard’ building we now believe the right way forward is a more modular approach to broaden the accommodation available to provide more modern and up to date facilities for a wider range of potential guests. Alongside this there will be a new emphasis on providing teaching, learning, discipling, worship and gathering opportunities for individuals, families and groups.
We believe the correct way forward now is to transform the existing chalets to provide significantly better-quality accommodation; build new and more flexible accommodation across multiple buildings across the site whilst at the same time providing upgrades to the whole centre; accessible bedrooms and bathrooms for guests with disabilities; provision of new rooms and storage for drying / storage / equipment for our adventure programme and upgrading the accommodation for our teams.
We aim to be starting work in April this year and will transform the Nethybridge centre over the coming 18 months. We believe the revised approach builds and improves on the ethos and vision previously captured in the ‘courtyard’ project.
Thank you so much for your generous donations to the project. Many of you will have received a letter in the post outlining the options for your gift available to you. If for some reason you did not receive a revised pledge / donation form, you can fill in our online form HERE.
We will be providing more detail and information over the coming months but at this time would be keen to hear back from you if you are content for your pledge to be used in this way.
If you would like to chat with someone then you can find out more details on our website or email email@example.com.
We are still building at Abernethy Nethybridge. If you would like to give, please find the details below.
Online through our give.net (Stewardship) page HERE.
To Abernethy Trust Ltd Development Account. Account number: 00245628. Sort code: 83-44-00 Reference ‘Nethybridge’
If you'd like to give a regular monthly donation, whatever amount, complete our standing order mandate HERE.