How community transport can open up a world of opportunity

Mar 16, 2016

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Tom Jeffery of Community Transport Association UK explains how charity allows people to get out and about.

What does charity mean to us as individuals, our communities and our world? That’s a big question. Charity means so many different things to so many different people, but at the Community Transport Association, charity means allowing individuals to be active and involved members of their communities.

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We’re a membership organisation for charities across the UK who provide communities with accessible and inclusive not for profit transport. This can take the form of buses, minibuses, cars and scooters; all helping those who can’t get out and about on their own. For these community transport charities, and the people that use their services, charity means the 85-year-old who is able to leave the house today; the child who can get to school and the young person who can get a job. It means that people up and down the country are able to participate in their communities because of the work that our members do. To individuals, communities and our world, charity means accessible transport that doesn’t discriminate and that works for everyone.

“Charity means the 85-year-old who is able to leave the house today; the child who can get to school and the young person who can get a job.”

Tom Jeffery

Recently, we asked our staff and our members to tell us what community transport means to them. Using #lovetransport, they told us why the services provided by community transport charities mean so much, to so many people. Their answers reflect why charity is so important to our society.

“I love transport”, said CTA Chief Executive Bill Freeman, because “there are so many people who channel their passion, imagination and tenacity into providing inclusive and accessible community transport.” “I love transport”, said Diane Irwin from Armagh Rural Transport, because “my heart beats for the valuable work ART’s volunteers and staff do by providing a lifeline through the provision of an accessible, affordable and flexible transport service.”

“We love to see people with a smile on their face when travelling on the bus,” said Maggie Lawson from Badenoch & Strathspey Community Transport Company, “getting out and about can be the small thing that makes a big difference to their day!”

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“I love transport”, said Pauline Mann from Tendering Community Transport, “because of the wonderful, inspiring people we meet on a daily basis who have such a positive outlook on life.”

“I love transport”, said Stephanie Riches, who works at the Community Transport Association, “because it is a privilege to be part of a movement that provides transport in a way that no other does, putting people at the heart of every service.”

That is what charity, in the community transport sector and beyond, means to individuals, our communities and our world. It’s a sector that puts people at the heart of everything and works tirelessly, day in and day out, to make a difference to the lives of so many.

This blog is part of the #CharityIs campaign to champion the charity sector. Join us as we use the power of social media to highlight how charities improve our daily lives.