Bellarine residents hitch a ride

June 4, 2020 BY

A free transport service to help the community through coronavirus was launched last month by Bellarine Community Health. Win, 89, and husband Derek, 90, have taken advantage.

RESIDENTS across the Bellarine are grateful for the extra support Bellarine Community Health is providing during the pandemic, including a free transport service which launched last month.
The transport service, alongside a dedicated phone line to assist community members in need of additional support, is helping residents get to doctor’s appointments, collect pharmacy scripts, pick up food and assist with shopping.
BCH community engagement manager Caroline Jordan said they’ve been really pleased with the uptake of the service.
“We have been using our staff, some of whom have been redeployed from other areas of the organisation, to handle incoming calls to the dedicated number and drive people around to appointments,” Ms Jordan said.
Portarlington residents Win, 89, and husband Derek Hunter, 90, have been regular users of the service for the past few weeks after a neighbour told them about it.
“The service has been wonderful. They’ve taken us to the doctors and to the chemist for prescriptions and for some groceries, it’s been great,” Mrs Hunter said.
“We have kept ourselves completely isolated as we felt to get into a taxi or onto a public transport bus was just too dangerous for us, so to be picked up at your door has been so good.”
Win and Derek said having access to a personalised transport service had made them feel like they were still independent.
“It’s just so good because we hate asking people for things, so this has been a real help.”
The BCH community support response relates specifically to COVID-19 with all requests prioritised based on need and availability of vehicles and drivers.
The dedicated COVID-19 community support number is 5258 0835.
Support is available for people around the Bellarine including: Barwon Heads, Ocean Grove, Wallington, Drysdale, Curlewis, Clifton Springs, Leopold, Marcus Hill, Mannerim, Queenscliff, Point Lonsdale, Portarlington, Indented Head and St Leonards.

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