Funding boost for Tyrone groups

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Older people with limited mobility are receiving more support thanks to almost £200,000 of National Lottery funding.

Shopmobility Mid Ulster has been awarded a £198,813 grant from Big Lottery Fund’s People and Communities programme. The National Lottery funding is being used to expand and improve the services they provide in Cookstown and Dungannon. They are also increasing accessibility to these services for people with limited mobility in Coalisland, Moneymore, Stewartstown, Pomeroy, Fivemiletown and Clogher.

People not able to go to their nearest Shopmobility location can have equipment delivered to their home, and the project is setting up ‘meet and greet’ points for people who are using their own or public transport but cannot walk to a Shopmobility centre. The project is working with Volunteer Centres in the Mid Ulster area to train volunteers to support people using the service.

Mark Farquhar, manager of Shopmobility Mid Ulster, said: “We are over the moon to receive this funding from the National Lottery towards what is a growing need across Mid Ulster. Over the past few years the demand for mobility equipment across the rural towns and villages of Mid Ulster has grown dramatically and with an aging population and increasing demands on the Health Service we expect this rise to continue.

“Rural and social isolation affect so many across Mid Ulster and we aim to help address some of the inequalities faced by people with mobility restrictions. The new project Gobility, will help to complement our existing services of providing mobility in Cookstown and Dungannon Town Centre. We are grateful to National Lottery players for this funding and are very excited to get the project started.”

The People and Communities programme offers grants of between £30,000 and £500,000 for two to five year projects. More information can be found at www.biglotteryfund.org.uk or by calling 028 90 551 455.