New rickshaw taxi service starts in town
- Credit: Charlotte Bond
A new rickshaw taxi service has started in Stowmarket - to combat loneliness and help those at risk of isolation get out and about.
Charity BSEVC provides a wide range of services to support those who may be feeling disconnected from their communities.
As well as its mental health and family carer support services, one of its main activities is its community transport - a lifeline to helping those who are frail, disabled or who might not otherwise be able to access public transport.
The organisation stepped up its services during the pandemic to offer emergency transport, as well as food and medical deliveries for key workers.
However, it has now acquired a new rickshaw to provide a different type of transport for residents in Stowmarket and surrounding villages - allowing them to get some fresh air and take in the picturesque sights and sounds of Suffolk along the way.
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Jenny Day, BSEVC business support officer, said: "It's to tackle isolation and loneliness.
"It is to help people with getting out and about and to build that community spirit.
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"Hopefully, people will see it and smile. Even if you're just going to the doctors, I think it's a fun way to get about.
"This is just adding to our transport but in a fun way. You're getting a lift but you're getting out in the fresh air at the same time. It is great for people's mental health."
One of the rickshaw's priorities will be helping people get to their coronavirus vaccine appointments.
BESVC will particularly be looking to support people in care homes - but stressed the rickshaw would also be open to younger generations who need it.
Although it will be important in helping people to get to and from appointments, the rickshaw will also be used to just simply give people a ride around town in the fresh air.
To make enquiries about the rickshaw, contact Jenny Day on 01473 707030.