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Care Lochaber

Public Services

Care Lochaber was set up in 1997 by a group of community-minded people. The group, originally called the Community Care Forum, had concerns over the lack of appropriate transport for people disadvantaged by poverty, age, disability, ill health and rural isolation. They established the Lochaber Community Car Scheme to help, and the service has now been running for twenty years.

Community Car Scheme            

The Community Car Scheme provides a practical and friendly service for over 380 registered users across Lochaber.  The service users tend to be older, struggling with mobility or long term health issues, or are geographically isolated and unable to access public transport.  The Car Scheme enables users to attend health appointments, social events, undertake shopping trips or visit friends.

Volunteering      

Care Lochaber currently works with a team of around 35 volunteer drivers, who undertake more than 3000 journeys using their own cars.  In the course of a year, they cover approximately 12,000 miles and give around 4000 hours of their own time to provide this crucial service.  Car scheme users pay a small fee for each journey which is payable to the volunteer driver to cover mileage expenses.

Events       

In addition to the community car scheme, Care Lochaber organise social events for older people.  The idea of these events is to provide opportunities for people to meet, talk and share. By accessing social opportunities, studies show that older people can maintain their independence for longer.  The NHS Annual Report of the Director of Public Health, states that ‘Loneliness in older people is a significant and growing issue because the risk factors for loneliness such as bereavement, reduced income and poor physical health, occur more frequently in older age’.

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