Yate Shopmobility scheme faces tough funding times

August 31 2015

A MUCH needed service that helps people with mobility problems in Yate is facing a funding crisis.

A MUCH needed service that helps people with mobility problems in Yate is facing a funding crisis.
Shopmobility has been running since 2006 in Yate Shopping Centre, allowing people to maintain their independence while using the shops and other facilities in the complex.
They can hire a battery-powered scooter or a wheelchair to get around the centre, with wheelchairs also available for longer term loan.
Over the years the scheme has been helped with grants from a number of organisations, such as local councils, as well as donations.
But National Lottery funding has ended and those who run the service say it is now facing an uncertain future.
Although South Gloucestershire Council has given help, it is not enough to ensure the scheme can continue at current levels of service.
Shopmobility said it was making great efforts to secure funding and its future by applying for grants from other sources, seeking donations from supporters and working with those running community transport to attract more users from other parts of the district.
It said its users had spoken of the “excellent” and “marvellous” service, with some saying they would be housebound without it. Others said they would be unable to get around the shops if they couldn’t use a scooter.
Shopmobility project worker Sheridan Crew said: “There continues to be a real need for people to have access to a scooter or wheelchair given the difficulties they experience with mobility.
“The impact of long term physical problems or sudden illness, such as a stroke or accident, can leave people feeling very socially and emotionally isolated.”
The Shopmobility office is open from Tuesdays to Fridays from 9.30am-4pm and on Thursdays and Saturdays from 9.30am-2pm.
For information about the service either email shopmobilitysouthglos@yahoo.com or phone 01454 868718 or 07999 574474.