Award winning Food Train celebrates its’ 20th anniversary

On the 6th July 2015, at 6pm, Dumfries and Galloway Council will be hosting a Civic Reception at the Municipal Chambers in Dumfries to reflect on and celebrate the 20th anniversary of Food Train. A number of invited guests will be present to celebrate the event from local partners, Councillors and MSP’s alongside past and present members, volunteers and Directors. Dumfries Provost Councillor Ted Thomson will make a presentation to Food Train Chairman Dr Rob Wells and Chief Executive Michelle McCrindle MBE, marking the occasion of 20 years excellent service to older people.

Set up by older people for older people following a community survey in North West Dumfries Food Train’s vision was to bring universal food access to any older person in need regardless of means or health testing to help them eat well, live well and age well. Food Train Founder Jean Mundell MBE devoted the last 14 years of her life to Food Train, from the original community survey in 1992 which led to Food Train’s launch, working tirelessly maintaining and promoting the Charity till her death in 2006. Retired Volunteer Rosemary Millar remembers the early years working alongside Jean “the van broke down with us one day and we were scared we couldn’t get the deliveries made but luckily we got a jump start from another volunteer’s car” While long standing customer Mrs Oakes who joined in 1999 says “I don’t know what I would without Food Train, I don’t get out much these days. I really enjoy the people coming they are so cheery, friendly and helpful”.

Food Train proved so popular in Dumfries, funding was provided in 2002 by Dumfries & Galloway Council Better Neighbourhood Services Fund to expand the food access provision right across the region. This was to spark national expansion further afield with over 1,750 older people benefiting across Scotland.
Since launching on the 29th June 1995 Food Train’s fantastic volunteers have made 228,000 grocery deliveries, shopped £6.77 million of groceries and given 631,000 precious hours of volunteering, all benefiting older people in need across Scotland. Everyone connected to Food Train is looking forward to the event and staying on track for the next 20 years and beyond.
Notes to editors:

Food Train is a Scottish Registered Charity and provides a range of volunteer delivered services supporting older people to remain independent in their own home for as long as they wish and are able to. Food Train services available to people over 65 include grocery delivery (Food Train), support of household tasks (Food Train EXTRA), befriending (Food Train Friends), an outreach Library Service (Food Train Library) and more recently a national neighbourhood meal sharing project (Meal Makers).

At present Food Train has around 1,700 members across seven local authorities in Scotland including Dumfries and Galloway, West Lothian, Dundee, Stirling, Glasgow, Renfrewshire and North Ayrshire. These services are made possible with the support of over 800 volunteers and a team of 32 staff.

Food Train Chief Executive Michelle McCrindle was recently awarded an MBE in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List. She has served at the Charity since 2002 and was the first full time member of staff to be employed and has overseen the growth of the Charity.

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