Award Celebrates The Value of Volunteers at Food Train

Older people’s charity secures Investing in Volunteers status

Food Train has secured top marks for the way in which the charity supports its volunteers to make a positive impact on older peoples’ lives.

The Dumfries-founded organisation has been awarded Investing in Volunteers (IiV) status, recognising its high standards for good practice in how it works with its volunteers.

Food Train’s operations are supported by more than 1,200 volunteers, not just in its home shopping collection and delivery hubs in 11 regions, but also its one-to-one Connects and befriending services throughout Scotland.

It is work that helps people aged 65 and over to live better lives in their own home by ensuring they not only have access to food, but good company too.

Some of the Food Train’s team in Dumfries – where the charity was formed by a group of volunteers in 1995 – have been among those celebrating the organisation’s success, sharing the news in some of the supermarkets in which they collect groceries.

Morna O’May, who heads Food Train’s Connects services, said: “Volunteering is at the heart of Food Train. We would not be here without them and would be nothing without the people who give of their time every week to make our members’ lives better. It’s work which makes a tremendous difference and for which we are incredibly grateful.

“We strive to give our volunteers – and potential volunteers – an outstanding experience and to feel valued.

“Achieving Investing in Volunteers status is testament to that. It gives real confidence to those interested in giving some of their time to help the older people we support to live healthier, happier lives.”

Andrew Begg, a Food Train volunteer in Dumfries, added: “There’s a great team spirit among the volunteers at Food Train. We all get a buzz from enjoying not only each other’s company while working together, but that of the members we meet along the way.

“While getting their shopping to them is important, it’s not just about that. It’s about giving them a little company too. For some, we might be the only people they see that day. It’s nice that this award recognises so much of what goes into making that possible.”

Food Train achieved IiV status after being assessed by Volunteer Scotland on the quality of its volunteer management, volunteer engagement programme and the effectiveness of its work with volunteers throughout 2023.

It was a process which involved staff and volunteers across all areas of the organisation, with the award enhancing its hard-earned reputation as a volunteer-involving organisation.

Anyone interested in finding out more about volunteering with Food Train can go to www.thefoodtrain.co.uk or call 01387 270800.

Latest Articles