Communities Together gets results in tight three week time window

A volunteer army meeting the needs of four different communities is forging ahead in its tireless quest – and has run the numbers on how many people it has helped.

The Communities Together group, which serves Bellshill, Mossend, Holytown and Thorniewood, has been delivering food parcels to people who may be shielding or struggling on Unversal Credit.

The team, which is based at Bellshill YMCA, has also been shopping for food and prescriptions for those who cannot go out.

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Figures released show that the two week period from Friday, May 1, 440 tasks were generated, with 268 of these being food parcels to households, meaning an average of 134 parcels a week benefitting 520 vulnerable people in that time.

Chair of Communities Together, Bellshill Councillor Jordan Linden, said: “Covid-19 is the biggest challenge we and our communities have faced in our lifetimes but the issues of food and fuel poverty have not gone away. These issues are being compounded during our battle with Coronavirus.

“Communities Together was created to tackle those issues and support vulnerable local people. The figures that we have seen – and they aren’t just figures but real people, with real stories and real troubles – are truly eye opening.

“The support which our organisation and our team of dedicated local volunteers are providing is crucial to our ability to continue to help local people at this time. I want to take the opportunity to thank the whole host of community partners, businesses and local people who have supported us to get the help we need to get out there to local people.”

Vice-chair, Claire McElroy, Health Improvement Senior for NHS Lanarkshire, added: “Working together, we are trying to ensure that no one is left behind and to provide further wrap around services to support individuals and families further than just providing food. We are doing this by addressing the issues beyond the immediate need to deliver sustainable outcomes.”

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