Save Our Service - Save Food Train North Ayrshire from closure

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Since 1st September 2015 registered charity Food Train has provided a vital weekly local grocery shopping and delivery service, bringing much needed food and friendship to older people in North Ayrshire. Local volunteers provide weekly deliveries of fresh groceries to older people experiencing difficulties doing their weekly grocery shopping to ensure that they can eat well, live well and age well. Over this time period we have made over 7,000 deliveries of fresh food and meals making over 14,000 social contacts. It is a thriving service with 172 members and is growing all the time with 32 new members being referred in the last 3 months alone.

We were therefore shocked and saddened to learn that North Ayrshire Health & Social Care Partnership (NAHSCP) have decided not to renew their funding of the service, meaning this vital food service will close on 31st March 2018.

Food Train has helped hundreds of people in North Ayrshire to eat better, eat more, reduce incidences of malnutrition, reduce the risk of falls, improve social contact, reduce loneliness and help older people live independently in their own home for longer.

We are deeply concerned about the consequences of the decision made by the NAHSCP which will compromise the safety and wellbeing of the frail, vulnerable older people who depend on our service. This was a decision taken without any consultation of the older people who currently benefit from using the service, and no alternative service has been offered to be put in its place.

We are also concerned by the financial implications of this decision. Food Train currently receives £75,000 of annual funding from the NAHSCP, this currently works out at £317.80 per customer using the service. The average hospital admission of an over 65 is 12 days at a cost of £4,800 to the NHS. The increased pressure on health services that will result from withdrawing the service will inevitably far exceed the cost of running Food Train North Ayrshire.

Everybody deserves the right to access food and to eat regardless of their age, for many in North Ayrshire Food Train is the way in which they access this right. We are asking you to sign this petition to ask the North Ayrshire Health & Social Care Partnership to reverse their decision to withdraw funding from Food Train North Ayrshire so that we can continue to deliver this much needed service to the older adults of North Ayrshire.



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