Callander Youth Project Trust
Callander Youth Project Trust, a charitable organisation dedicated to improving the lives of young people within the Loch Lomond and Trossachs area, secured a £144,000 loan from SIS as part of the funding package required to assist in the development and build of accessible eco pods.
Callander Youth Project (CYP) provide a range of activities, including after-school clubs and weekend excursions to the young people in the local area. In addition, a key focus for CYP is helping local young people (aged 16-29) gain access to employment and training opportunities. They offer Modern Apprenticeships and supported employment in all areas of hospitality in-house from their premises.
CYP Holidays is situated in one of Callander’s oldest and most distinctive buildings – a beautiful Tudor-style former hotel in the heart of the town. It offers panoramic views of Ben Ledi and is a convenient location for exploring the National Park.
In 2019, CYP realised the potential of expanding the CYP Holiday offering to include luxurious glamping pods, including The Crags Pod – a pod that is fully accessible for anyone with a disability.
CYP reached out to SIS to assist with the gap in funding for this project. They secured a loan from SIS, which allowed CYP to develop and build four glamping pods. The pods offer travellers a little extra privacy from the hostel, and are comfortably designed with a fully equipped kitchenette, bathroom (including a shower) and offer stunning views of the surrounding mountains.
The accessible pod is located at the foot of the CYP garden. It has been designed to be fully accessible by wheelchair and includes the following special features:
- Wide doorways and a level interior
- Sizeable wet-room with shower/changing bench adjustable-height washbasin, Clos-o-Mat toilet and a level-access shower
- Profile bed (single) in the main bedroom, with ceiling (y-shape) hoist running through to the bathroom.
The glamping pods opened in June 2021 and have been booking up fast. The pods provide an opportunity for everyone and anyone to enjoy a refreshing and comfortable respite in one of Scotland’s most beautiful areas.
A family that has already enjoyed the accessible pod are the Rutherfords from Stirling. The difficulties the family of four face when going on holiday often outweigh the benefits as son Quinns has celebral palsy. However, they were able to enjoy a glamping trip with enough space to accommodate the family unit, plus all their equipment and still enable Quinns to move around in his wheelchair.
“Thank you Callander Youth Project for having such a wonderful accessible pod and making us feel so welcome. With all the pods’ facilities to keep us safe and comfortable, we still had energy to explore Callander, taking in the River Teith, Loch Lubnaig and the Bracklinn Falls.”
Holidaymaker and Quinns’ mum, Jennifer Rutherford
“The development of the pods involved significant time and investment. With support from Social Investment Scotland, who provided a £144,000 loan to help with the project, we have been able to keep the rental costs as low as possible for the families who visit us and secure a long-term sustainable model for our provision for the young people we employ.”
Patricia Kent, Manager of Callander Youth Project