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Seaboard Communities' COVID-19 response

Supporting Communities Fund award for Easter Ross

Supporting Communities Fund award for Seaboard Memorial Hall

The COVID-19 pandemic has affected everyone. And particularly the elderly, the vulnerable groups who are shielding from the virus, the self-isolating, and those who have lost income and are trying to make ends meet.

The Easter Ross Seaboard communities of Balintore, Hilton, Shandwick, Fearn, Nigg and Portmahomack are working together to ensure anyone who needs help can get it during the lockdown.

The Seaboard Centre, also called the Seaboard Memorial Hall, despite having to close its regular facilities for lockdown, has remained a hub of activity as volunteers organise local emergency support.

The Scottish Government's Supporting Communities Fund is being distributed by HIE in the region. It's given the Memorial Hall £13,000 to support local groups reach those who need help over the coming weeks. 

 

We are reaching out to people who are elderly and isolated. This service has the beneficial flip side that having them phone in their orders allows us to find out how they are coping with things and often have a wee chat.
Maureen Ross, director, Seaboard Memorial Hall

Help where it's needed

The local team in the Seaboard consists of members of the Community Council, Balintore & District Residents Group, the local Royal Voluntary Service and the Seaboard Centre. 

The team's first task when lockdown was introduced was to let the community know what was about to happen. They provided Green Tick/Red Cross leaflets with advice and helpline contact numbers were produced and distributed. In only four days, 800 six-page packs were printed and distributed throughout the Seaboard, Fearn and Nigg postcode areas.This was followed by 800 information leaflets on the Meals on Wheels service being planned.

Meals on Wheels

Almost 150 people are receiving Meals on Wheels twice a week in the areas of Balintore, Hilton, Shandwick, Nigg and Fearn. Every week has seen more people come onto the service, with Memorial Hall's Lynda Durrand doing a great job organising menus and catering.  

 

 

 

Emergency food boxes

In the first five weeks since lockdown the volunteers have prepared and distributed more than 370 boxes of food to families affected by the crisis. 

They have been working with CCAST in Tain on food boxes, and have also had donations from Asda. Each family has been receiving two boxes each week packed with essential supplies. The volunteers have supplemented the deliveries with bags of tatties, fruit and vegetables and fresh eggs when available. 

Seaboard Memorial Hall director Maureen Ross, says that local people have been overwhelmed by the support. She thanked all those who have given their time in the kitchen and to organise and deliver the supplies for free.