Restrictions can’t go on, says provost

By 2025, a quarter of the Falkirk population will be aged 65 and over
By 2025, a quarter of the Falkirk population will be aged 65 and over

Charities working with elderly people are going to have to continue the work they are doing without more money from Falkirk Council.

Five organisations received help from the council in 2013/14 - Independent Living Association got £29,604, Princess Royal Trust for Carers £141,898, Meals on Wheels £10,400, Alzheimer’s Scotland £63,219 and Falkirk and District Association for Mental Health (FDAMH) £177,777.

At its latest meeting Falkirk Council’s scrutiny committee praised the work done by the charities on the budgets they have.

Provost Pat Reid said: “By 2035, a quarter of the Falkirk population will be aged over 65. I had to read that twice when I saw the report, so the services supplied for older people are vital and need protection.

“These organisations have not had any increase to their budget, but most are supplying more services than ever before. But we can’t push them too far, they can’t keep giving more and more on the same funding.”

Provost Reid voiced concerns that FDAMH would find it difficult to continue on a budget restricted by the sums they had received from the council and the NHS and in facilities that are now too small.

Councillors also raised concerns about the funding given to the Independent Living Association. As well as the £29,000 grant, the charity, which helps disabled people who want to manage their own care via the government’s self directed support scheme, Falkirk Council gives £12,000 of free office space.

Last year the organisation helped 60 individuals - but the committee heard they deal with many enquiries from people keen to learn more about the scheme. Most don’t sign up once they discover how much work is involved and these enquiries are not included in official figures.