12 Feb 2024

Chamber patron unveils disability charity’s performance hub

Doug Sense.jpeg

Businessman and Greater Birmingham Chambers of Commerce patron Doug Wright officially unveiled a performance space for people who are deafblind and have complex disabilities.

National disability charity Sense, whose community hub Sense Touchbase Pears is located in Selly Oak, Birmingham, has named one of its spaces The Douglas Wright MBE Performance Hub following a significant donation from the McDonald’s franchisee.

The performance hub is used for activities such as dance, music and yoga.

Mr Wright’s hospitality company, Wright Restaurants (T/A McDonald’s), is a major employer in the West Midlands, with just under 3,000 staff across 26 sites.

Sense TouchBase Pears aims to create an accessible environment where everyone can feel connected, included and part of the community.

The Bristol Road-based hub combines health and social care services with arts, sports and wellbeing activities.

It also supports disabled people to access employment, education, volunteering and training opportunities and offers free play sessions for children under eight with complex disabilities, and their families.

Mr Wright, who is also a Deputy Lieutenant for the West Midlands and chair of the Kids’ Village charity, was joined by members of the Sense team for the official opening of the performance hub.

He said: “It was very inspiring to visit the hub so generously named after me and see first hand the wonderful work that Sense do. It really is incredibly special to see how transformational their work is.

“I was able to witness the difference the volunteers make to those attending. I look forward to my next visit and am proud that I have been able to help fund their work in my own small way.

“I would encourage people to reach out to Sense to find out more about the amazing work they do for people across the West Midlands."

Eimear Daly, head of philanthropy and special events at Sense, said: “We were thrilled to have Doug visit us to officially unveil the plaque for The Douglas Wright MBE Performance Hub at Sense TouchBase Pears, Birmingham.

“We run lots of activities here for people of all ages with complex disabilities, from sensory sessions for children that encourage connection and play, to adult dance workshops that promote being active and social.

“Having this space means everyone has the opportunity to take part in life, no matter what their disability. To have its importance recognised by Doug is wonderful.”

Pictured: Matt Lock, associate director of philanthropy and partnerships, Eimear Daly, head of philanthropy and special events, Doug Wright and Sunney Sharma, arts and wellbeing development manager (national)

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