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Pub quizzes help local drinkers raise cash for Mobility Advice Line
Pubs in South Birmingham are hosting special fundraising quizzes for local disability charity, Mobility Advice Line (MAL). The pub quizzes in the city centre, Quinton, Stirchley and Kings Heath will raise valuable cash for this small but valued West Midlands charity.
These quizzes are happening at a wide variety of venues in late January and throughout February:
- Thurs 27 Jan, 8pm at the City Tavern, Bishopsgate Street
- Weds 9 Feb, 9pm at the Amber Tavern, Hagley Road West, Quinton
- Thur 17 Feb, 8pm, at The Hazelwell, Pineapple Road, Stirchley
- Mon 21 Feb, 8pm, at The Red Lion, Vicarage Road, Kings Heath
From its Edgbaston base, MAL gives free and impartial advice on a wide range of issues to disabled people, their friends, families and carers. Advice includes information on mobility issues such as wheelchairs, mobility scooters and the blue badge scheme but also welfare and benefits advice, ensuring disabled people and their carers receive the help that they are entitled to. As well as a telephone hotline, MAL offers home visits for one-on-one guidance.
Whilst its official coverage is in the West Midlands, MAL finds itself taking calls from as far afield as Surrey, Wales and even Scotland, because of the lack of local, free advice for disabled people. Its phone lines take an average of 500 calls a year and are manned entirely by volunteers.
MAL doesn’t receive government funding and relies on donations from public and corporate sponsors. As a small organisation, its running costs are low but its advice line needs constant input of cash. As little as £12 a day can keep the phones ringing, but this amounts to a cost of £4000+ per year which is a big ask for a small charity.
MAL’s beginnings are a testament to the difference that individuals can make to those who rely on the third sector. Its founder was a wheelchair user, Andy Whyment, who found it difficult to gather information on motoring and disability access, so in 1993 he set up MAL in his own home. Since Andy’s death in 1996, MAL has had a series of guardians who’ve carried on the charity’s work, leading to a period of stability since the current director took over operations in 2005.