COMMUNITY First Wiltshire can now support hundreds of isolated older people in Wiltshire thanks to funding from Comic Relief. It is to be awarded just over £53,000 over the next two years to assist older people living in Royal Wootton Bassett and Trowbridge.

The money will be used to fund the Good Neighbour Service, which provides financial and benefits information, debt counselling and other advice to people in their own homes.

Good Neighbour co-ordinators will first visit clients at home to discuss their needs and identify which organisations can help.

Where debt counselling or in-depth information is needed on financial matters, a further visit will be made by one of Community First Wiltshire’s financial experts.

The scheme has already been trialled with the families of young carers through a project called Care 4UR Cash and has been a great success.

“Older people are the largest group on low incomes in rural areas,” said Community First assistant chief executive Lynn Gibson.

“Often travelling to more centralised services is not an option for them.

“This scheme will help around 285 people over two years.

“We will work with the Citizens Advice Bureau and other partners to offer the more specialist advice and support such as Debt Relief orders.”