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COVID: James Cameron Community Centre in Inverness will return to normal duties after being used as a Covid community co-ordination and food distribution centre

By Louise Glen

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James Cameron Community Centre.
James Cameron Community Centre.

From next Monday, the James Cameron Community Centre in Kinmylies will return to its regular role in the community as The Highland Council ends its use as a community co-ordination and food distribution centre.

The centre in Inverness was one of a number of facilities in the city to help with the Covid support given to communities.

Bringing the building back into use, Steve Walsh, High Life Highland’s chief executive said: “From the very start of the pandemic, High Life Highland has been keen to support our colleagues in The Highland Council and NHS Highland in any way that it can.

“Amongst other things, this help included the charity offering staff to use their expertise to help out where they could and in addition, offering the use of its facilities for use as humanitarian centres and vaccine centres.

“At the offset, HLH’s largest facility, Inverness Leisure, was immediately identified as the first Highland humanitarian co-ordination centre; with the HLH team working very closely with Highland Council colleagues to support those residents most in need across the region. The location was in use from 30th March 2020 until July.

He continued: “As progress was being made in managing the pandemic and mitigating the spread of the virus, along with the gradual easing of restrictions, a smaller venue was required and the role was temporarily picked up by colleagues in Eden Court, before returning once again to a High Life Highland facility, where it has remained since December 7 2020.

“It’s really important for me to acknowledge that this vital role has been very ably and expertly carried out by council colleagues. However, I am both delighted and honoured that the HLH team has been able to support, with many HLH staff volunteering and others providing operational assistance in our locations.

He added: “It is great to see that James Cameron Community Centre is now returning to its business-as-usual role and will have its programming re-integrated back to delivering much-needed physical and mental health and wellbeing activities in the Dalneigh and wider-Inverness communities.”

Ross Dudgeon, the manager responsible for the location returning to full community use said: “Setting aside the unfortunate circumstance that led to James Cameron Community Centre to be used as it has been since the end of last year, it has been a privilege for the team and I to work alongside and support our colleagues from The Highland Council.

“The HLH team and I are very much looking forward to getting back to a level of normality and welcoming our regulars back to the James Cameron.”

READ: Inverness Museum makes a call for Covid-19 healthcare items, images and stories for a new Highland exhibition 'Health Wealth and Happiness'

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