Go Fund Me Appeal

The ADINJC will be supporting and working in association with members Susan McDonald and Bobbie Hicks who have taken the initiative to set up a Go Fund Me Page for struggling ADIs and PDIs. Our Governing Committee is in support of this worthy cause, and we hope our members will be too.  Having spoken with them they have a well thought out and very positive plan and they should be applauded for what they are trying to achieve. We all agree that with the backing of the ADINJC and hopefully others in the industry we can have a fund for struggling ADIs not just through the trials and stress of COVID-19 but after that time too.  We hope that if as ADIs ourselves we can all make a small contribution we can help those struggling to cope.  Having run our “Talk Line” during the pandemic we became acutely aware of ADIs who were desperate and alone.  And we are extremely aware that there are many people who have fallen through the cracks of government financial assistance. 

Can I only donate through the Go Fund Me page?
Donations made through the Go FundMe page will be the only ones that will show in the total on that page. However, donations can also be sent direct to the bank account at:

Bank – NatWest, Account Name – Helping ADI & PDI’s,
Sort Code – 54-21-54,
Account No – 35283769.

This account can also be used to set up longer term contributions such as Direct Debit or Standing Orders.

Why was the fund set up?

The Scheme was set up to provide monetary assistance to help an ADI or PDI at any time for any just reason including, but not limited to, lockdown
measures from COVID-19, hardship, bereavement, or illness. It was launched with a focus on ADI and PDI’s who are unable to qualify for government assistance (e.g., SEISS) or local council grants during the pandemic.

Who started it and who is in control of it?

The fund was started by two ADIs who wanted to help other colleagues. Bobbie Hicks and Susan McDonald realised that many ADIs and PDIs were struggling financially and wanted to help, so set up this fund. It started off slowly but with the help of the industry, it has now reached over £20,000 in total and is still growing. The scheme is supported and associated with NASP (The National Associations Strategic Partnership) which comprises of the 3 leading national associations for driving instructors: ADINJC, DIA and MSA GB.

You can read more about Bobbie and Susan on the website www.instructorfund.org

Why have NASP become involved?

NASP have become involved in the scheme to help promote the fund, give support, and offer advice. This also means that the fund will be able to reach as many ADIs and PDIs as possible through the 3 national associations that comprise NASP.

Also, Bobbie and Susan will have support for the scheme from a well-known and established organisation which can spread much wider and, we feel, gives it more credence.

Details of NASP can be found on their website. www.n-a-s-p.co.uk

Do I need to be a member of a NASP association to apply?
You do not need to be a member of a NASP association to make an application. More details of each of the 3 associations are available on their website www.n-a-s-p.co.uk

Where can I find the rules for the fund?
The rules for the fund can be found on the website, by email and on the Go Fund Me page and are also available from each of the 3 associations of NASP. www.instructorfund.org

What amounts will be paid out?
Payments will depend on the number of applications we receive and the amount available in the fund at the time. They will be small grants usually of £100 but in some circumstances, they could be as much as £500. The grants paid out will not exceed £500. Funding amounts available will be at the discretion of the funding panel and their decision is final.

What is the process if I want to apply?
An initial application for funding is to be made by email to support@instructorfund.org.

An application form will then be sent to the applicant by return. All applications must be received on this form and completed in full. A third party, such as a local group committee member may suggest that someone may be eligible for assistance. That person will then be sent an application form.

In the event of an application due to lockdown measures, the person to receive funding must have exhausted all mainstream options of support, including but not limited to Universal Credit, SEISS, Bounce Back Loans and local authority grants. Those in receipt of Universal Credit or other support may still apply if they can provide proof that they are unable to cover their personal living costs.

Can this fund be used to back up my business?
No, all funds are given on a personal basis and are to be used for living costs

What evidence will I need to give?
The application form must be accompanied by:
 an up-to-date copy of the applicant’s green badge or pink licence
 any relevant documentation requested or to support the application
 evidence of refusal of government support
 a brief explanation of the reasons why the ADI/PDI believes they are suitable to
apply for assistance from the fund
 Bank account details (This must be a UK bank account)
 A copy of the applicants driving licence or passport for photographic evidence
The Panel reserves the right to ask for further supporting information in the pursuance of an application for funds.

How long will the process take?
This process will take a maximum of between 4 and 6 weeks.

Will my application be confidential?
Yes, all information will be kept confidential and in compliance with GDPR. The panel will keep a copy of each application form submitted for up to three months after final assessment for funding has taken place.
After the application form is received, it will be checked and made anonymous before being given to the panel to make a final decision.

Who is on the panel?
The Panel will comprise of Susan McDonald and Bobbie Hicks the organisers. It will also have at least 5 members of the NASP association which comprises the ADINJC, DIA and MSA GB. These members will come from the committees or be senior representatives of each association.

How will I know if I am successful?
A member of the panel will inform the ADI/PDI by email and/or telephone if their application has been successful.

How will the amounts be paid out?
Payments will be made directly into the nominated account on the application by bank transfer from the account held by the fund.

Are any expenses taken by the organisers?
No expenses will be claimed or paid to any member of the panel or members of NASP. The only charges envisaged would be any bank or Go Fund Me charges incurred. Thanks must go to all the volunteers who have helped make this possible for their time and support.

Is this fund just for the period of COVID-19?
Although this fund has been set up as a result of Covid 19, and to help people through the current situation, it is hoped that if funds can be secured on an ongoing basis this project can continue to help those in our industry who need it in the future.

Is there a website? Yes, the website is  www.instructorfund.org

Who are Susan and Bobbie?

Susan: 

My name is Susan McDonald and I am a self-employed Driving Instructor from Billingham in Teesside.  Since my partner died in 2006, I have been a single parent to 3 amazing boys (actually, they are now men – but they’re still my boys)!  Prior to being an ADI, I spent my working life in various offices working in administration and financial roles until I was made redundant and my father died shortly after.  At this point I realised that there was more to life than sitting in a boring office all day and that now was the time to make the change and do something I actually wanted to do and not something I had to do to make ends meet.  Many, many years before I had wanted to become a Driving Instructor, so I decided that it was now or never. 

In my ‘spare’ time, for over 30 years, I have been a volunteer of a Registered Charity which is the local branch of the National Charity Phab.  During this time, I have held the positions of treasurer, administrator, Assistant Chairperson, fundraiser, leader, and organiser and I am currently the Person In Charge of the Charity and also the Manager of the Community Centre which we have the lease of.  In my younger days I was also one of the founder members of the Phab Youth Council. 

During the first lockdown I noticed a lot of ADI/PDI’s were saying how much they were struggling to make ends meet as they were not entitled to any financial help and were unable to earn a living due to restrictions imposed.  Some of these people were really struggling and seemed quite desperate. At this time, I thought that there must be some help somewhere for these people, but there was nothing for so many of them and I wished I could help them in some way. 

In November, as we entered a second lockdown I noticed a lot of people again starting to worry about how they were going to survive yet another lockdown without help and started to think of a way I could help.  I decided to ask a small Facebook group for their opinion on setting up a fund to help the ‘forgotten ones’ and found that many people were willing to donate.  Bobbie Hicks got in touch with me and we discussed how this could be possible and if the fund could actually help people and we decided it was ‘worth a try’ so together we set up a Go Fund Me page.  Within the first few days the fund had raised almost £300.   

The main aim of the fund is to ask fellow Driving Instructors, family and friends if they could donate any amount to be able to provide a little financial assistance to fellow ADI/PDI’s who find themselves in financial difficulty through no fault of their own.  There will be a strict selection process to ensure that the funds are allocated fairly and to the people who really need them. 

https://www.phab.org.uk/  

Bobbie: 

I have been a driving instructor for about 27 years, during that time I have taken further training to become an Accident Investigator and then later a Fleet trainer. For a while during the second lockdown, I was thinking about setting up a Go Fund me page to help all the ADI’s and PDI’s whose stories I was coming across on Facebook. I saw Susan McDonald’s post about a similar idea and contacted her and this project was started. It seems like a scary thing to do, but we cannot live in fear, so we took the bull by the preverbal horns and launched the Go Fund me page.  

 We have both been bowled over by your offer of help at the ADINJC, which we are most grateful for. 

Special thanks must go to the inspiring offer of help from our sponsor Marmalade. who have donated a total sum of £10,000 to the fund.

We also want to thank another of our sponsors, MyDriveTime for a generous donation.

Finally we want to thank Simon Johnston from AcciDON’T who has also given us a large donation.

We do hope our members will be supportive, and give generously to help others in a less fortunate situation. Even small contributions will help.  Let’s make this an initiative that ADIs can get behind to support people in our industry. 

Lynne Barrie MA