Volunteer driver appeal from Burnham Community Association

Reporter:

James Hockaday

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A call has been made for volunteers to give up a few hours a week to help support a vital service run by the Burnham Community Association (BCA).

The association, which carries out a variety of services in Burnham, runs a community minibus service which transports elderly residents to regular meet-ups, classes and outings.

However, the association is short on drivers and is looking for more volunteers to help keep the service going.

The BCA’s transport manager Tom Scharff said: “We have regular weekly trips. It all started with the Asda run.

“Every Friday we take people to Asda to do their weekly shopping, but it’s grown from that to all sorts of other trips like the Monday Club and Movers and Shakers.”

“It’s those round, weekly trips that we’re really finding trouble in finding drivers to be available for.”

The group also takes passengers on occasional trips further afield including London or the seaside.

Tom says the ideal candidates for the scheme would be recently retired people in their 50s to mid 60s who can give up a few hours a week.

He says this is the ideal age because drivers would be more likely to be free during the week.

The BCA, which currently has 10 drivers for the scheme, is hoping to recruit an extra five.

“There's just not enough available to handle the commitments that we do have,” Tom added.

The BCA’s 17-seater minibus is its third bus since it started the scheme 25 years ago.

For many elderly residents with no cars of their own, who are too frail for public transport, the scheme is a vital lifeline.

Tom added: “The people who do it really do thoroughly enjoy it, it’s quite amazing.

“One of the pleasures in life is doing things to help other people.”

The BCA also need people who are happy to accompany elderly residents as helpers for trips including the Asda shopping mornings.

To volunteer as a minibus driver for the scheme contact Tom Scharff on 07515 459946 or Tom.Scharff@hotmail.com.

Visit www.burnhamcommunityassociation.org.uk for more information.

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