Help group make a date with Lottery win

People are being asked to help a Falkirk area charity in its bid to be a National Lottery cash winner.

Dates-n-mates summer party in Grangemouth Town Hall
Dates-n-mates summer party in Grangemouth Town Hall

Recently formed dates-n-mates has reached the finals of the 25th Birthday awards – with the winners taking a £10,000 prize to fund more good work.

Dates-n-mates Falkirk was set up earlier this year to run social and dating events in accessible venues for adults with learning disabilities. It has a two-year funding package from Falkirk Council and the National Lottery.

Last week it held a summer party in Grangemouth Town Hall where singer Barbara Bryceland entertained and local companies, including Candied provided ice cream and treats.

It beat off competition from 700 other projects to reach the finals of the annual search to find the public’s favourite National Lottery-funded projects.

As well as the cash prize, the winners will receive a trophy and attended a star-studded awards ceremony to be broadcast on BBC One in November.

Dates-n-mates is in the running for Best Community and Charity Project for its work providing opportunities for members to meet new people, try new things and develop their social skills, confidence and independence.

John Paul Moffat, dates-n-mates’ national director, said: “Our members are so proud and excited that dates-n-mates have reached the finals of the 25th Birthday National Lottery Awards.

“Adults with learning disabilities just don’t have the same opportunities to meet people – sometimes they only know their families or the people who are paid to care for them. It can be a very lonely and boring life.

“National Lottery funding has allowed dates-n-mates to offer people the chance to get out and about, make friends and find love – and this absolutely transforms lives.

“It would mean so much to our members and their families for us to win this award and we would urge the public to get behind us in our quest to be named the Best Community and Charity project.”

The National Lottery raises more than £30 million each week for good causes.

The award categories reflect the main areas of National Lottery funding: heritage, sport, arts, culture and film, community and charity, sporting legend which will be decided by a public vote alongside lifetime achievement, young hero, special recognition, and twelve local legend awards, which will be selected by a panel made up of representatives from the National Lottery family.

To vote go to You can also vote for dates-n-mates using #NLAdatesnmates. Voting runs until midnight on August 21.