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BBC befriends

THE SHETLAND Befriending Scheme has been safeguarded from making cutbacks thanks to a £54,107 grant from the BBC Children in Need appeal.

The scheme was under threat as part of the Shetland Islands Council belt tightening exercise that is starting to squeeze services throughout the isles.

Welcoming the award, Voluntary Action Shetland executive officer Catherine Hughson said: “This service is funded through a partnership involving the local authority, through the council’s children’s services.

“There were fears that if the Children in Need application was unsuccessful, this service would have had to be cut back.

“Now that this funding has been secured, we can continue to support these vulnerable clients at the same level as in previous years.”

Befriending offers supportive, reliable relationships through volunteer befrienders to people who would otherwise be socially isolated.

Scottish Parliament election, 6 May 2021