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The voice of Scotland’s vibrant voluntary sector

Published by Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations

TFN is published by the Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations, Mansfield Traquair Centre, 15 Mansfield Place, Edinburgh, EH3 6BB. The Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations (SCVO) is a Scottish Charitable Incorporated Organisation. Registration number SC003558.

National Lottery steps in to save Food Train Glasgow

This news post is about 1 year old

The charity was facing immediate closure after a series of funding issues. 

A charity which ensures hundreds of older people across Glasgow do not go without food has been saved from immediate closure.

Food Train Glasgow faced being forced to shut this month, but has been thrown a lifeline through a £75,000 grant from The National Lottery Community Fund.

Members have spoken of their relief that the funding will secure the charity’s shopping and delivery services for 400 people aged 65 and over for the next 12 months while work to safeguard operations for the longer term continue.

It will also allow Food Train to further help its members through the cost of living crisis, with support about how to maximise income, reduce household costs as well as feeling supported, safe and warm in their own home.

The branch’s future was plunged into crisis after Glasgow City Council, which had funded the bulk of the charity’s operations since it launched locally a decade ago, rejected its latest three-year funding application in January.

City residents and organisations rallied to raise thousands of pounds via a Crowdfunding campaign which kept operations going after its local authority funding ended in March.

Food Train has written to its members, sharing the news - with many of them sharing their reaction with members as their shopping has been delivered.

Chief executive Michelle Carruthers said: “We are delighted and relieved to have secured this amazing support from The National Lottery Community Fund. This will reduce the risk of our older members in Glasgow from becoming lonelier, malnourished and seriously ill over the coming year.

“The effects on the wellbeing of our members has been a big worry for our team, and particularly worrying for our fantastic volunteers who are like extended family to many of our members. But the way the community has rallied behind us has been so heartening, highlighting the positive difference that Food Train makes to the lives of many older people. We’re grateful to everyone who has got behind our fight for survival so far. 

“While we’re all relieved to know that we can continue to be there for the next year, our focus now is to secure a way of being there for the longer term too - easing uncertainty and hopefully supporting even greater numbers of older people across Glasgow.

“We hope that talks with other potential sources of funding for the next financial year - as well as those commissioning support services for older people across Glasgow - will begin shortly.”

In the past 10 years, Govanhill-based Food Train Glasgow has made more than 67,000 grocery deliveries.

In the aftermath of the council funding cut decision over 5,000 people also signed a petition calling on authorities to find some way of supporting Food Train’s work in Glasgow.

Kate Still, Scotland Chair of the National Lottery Community Fund, said: “National Lottery funding can make amazing things happen in local communities across the country. Food Train Glasgow, is a great example of community activity in action, showing just what can be achieved when people come together for a common cause or to help others. National Lottery players can be proud to know that the money they raise is helping to support this vital work and to help communities thrive.”