Appeal for support to help win crucial funding The North East Autism Society (NEAS) is a regional finalist in the race to win a share of the Persimmon Homes’ Building Futures £1 million fund aimed at supporting under-18s across the country. NEAS stands to win a cash award of £20,000, £50,000 or £100,000 at a gala dinner in October, with the money being used to support its Early Years groups. However, in order to win, the award-winning charity needs to attract as many online votes as possible. NEAS chief executive John Phillipson said: We are thrilled to have been selected as a regional finalist, but now we really need people to get behind us and get voting so that we are in the strongest possible position to earn one of the top three cash awards on the night. As an organisation, we realise the importance of understanding what each person’s needs are so we can provide bespoke care. As well as supporting families, we aim to help children to develop vital skills, giving them the strongest possible foundation for the future. The top award of £100,000 would allow us to run weekly Early Years groups across the whole of the North-East, allowing families to access a specialist group local to them, reducing both costs and distances travelled. It would also allow us to run local family workshop courses. Online voting closes at midnight on September 27 and, as well as the top three awards, a further 87 shortlisted projects will each receive £5,000. To vote simply go to www.persimmonhomes.com Click on “finalists” and select the North East Autism Society and vote each day to help the charity win the big cash award. Persimmon Homes is an official partner of Team GB and the Persimmon Charitable Commission enlisted the help of medallists Kat Copeland and Callum Skinner to help determine the three regional finalists for each business division.