Community360 (C360) has taken delivery of two new community minibuses, helping it to continue to operate a safe and responsive Community Transport service. This was thanks to extra funding from the Colchester City Council Inequalities Grant. £30,000 was awarded to Community360 to fund the two new minibuses as well as to help develop its valuable transport service to the community in Colchester.

Community360 provides transport services in Colchester, Maldon and Chelmsford, helping people in the local community who have difficulty accessing public transport. The charity works with more than 500 charities, voluntary and community groups across Essex each year to assist them to continue to do their valuable work. Using their influence to reduce inequalities and increase opportunities.

The charity has seen an increase in people wanting to access the service. Especially those without access to public transport or cars to get them to clinical appointments. Without the provision of transport, it can mean citizens are late or end up missing appointments. It can put a real financial strain on people who need to attend regular appointments at a hospital for long-term conditions, such as chemotherapy treatment for cancer. Supporting citizens to get to these appointments with accessible, door to door transport and on time will improve accessibility to services important to their health and wellbeing.

Tracy Rudling, CEO of Community360 said: “There continues to be increased pressure on our system, and people with complex health and mobility issues are relying on our type of service more than ever.

For many individuals, especially those in rural or low-density communities who lack other means of transport, volunteer transportation programmes act as a lifeline to access medical care, see friends, family and loved ones, to go shopping, plus other services important to their health and wellbeing. They allow older adults and people with mobility limitations, the opportunity to access places and retain their independence, preventing isolation and maintaining their health. This is why community transport services are so important.”