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Faces of Funding: North Canterbury Mini Bus Trust

Being able to get out and about to socialise can make all the difference to vulnerable people in our communities – and  the North Canterbury Mini Bus Trust helps make that happen in the Waimakariri district.

NCMBT provides inexpensive specialised transport services for those who don’t have the ability to transport themselves including the elderly, frail and disabled.

Running for 30 years their services enables people to get out and about to socialise, effectively reducing social isolation and supporting people to engage in their community.

NCMBT Advertising and Publicity Manager Greg Wright says a fleet of vans and buses are available for community members and organisations to hire and support those living in Kaiapoi, Rangiora, Oxford and Cust to join social events, run errands or attend appointments.

The service is accessible and affordable, with most of the vehicles fitted with wheelchair hoists, and hire prices are held at $20 for the first 20km and 50 cents per kilometre after that.

Greg says the service is not just about getting people from A to B – it’s a social experience, with drivers chatting and making jokes with clients, and sometimes taking scenic detours to give them a chance to see the North Canterbury countryside.

It provides a connection to the community, ensuring clients can stay active and involved, and improve their wellbeing by maintaining their independence.

During COVID-19 NCMBT lent their fleet of vans and buses to community organisations and individuals providing essential services, such as delivering food packages or transporting vulnerable people to medial appointments.

During this time the use of the vans and buses were free of charge, which Greg says allowed service providers to support the community without having to worry about the cost.

Rātā Foundation provides funding to the North Canterbury Mini Bust Trust under the Support focus area, enabling older people/kaumātua to live full, active lives and help reduce social isolation.

Find out more about the North Canterbury Mini Bus Trust here: