Scottish charity The Food Train marked a special delivery this week with one remarkable Glaswegian helping out another.

35,000 was the magic number for volunteer John Cameron and Pollokshaws resident June McKay — with the figure marking the amount of food shopping deliveries made by the charity to its customers across the city.

First launched in Dumfries 24 years ago, The Food Train’s Glasgow office has been providing practical support to residents over the age of 65 since 2013.

And vital to that service is ensuring customers like June receive their weekly shopping.

While John has called on June with her messages for the past five years, this week’s delivery was a little bit special, with it recognising the friendship and support The Food Train has given them both.

John says: “June and I have built up a good friendship with each other. We’ve got trust and that’s something that’s been built over time. We also have a good bit of banter together.”


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Like all The Food Train’s volunteers, John does more than merely drop off shopping lists to the city’s older residents, as he explains: “We’re more than just being a food delivery service, putting it away and going back out the door. We sit and talk to our customers.

“I observe if someone isn’t looking okay… if I’m a bit worried about someone, I report that back to the office.”

June is currently returning to her routine having been in hospital for much of the past five months. A big part of getting back into the swing of things is welcoming John through her door again.

Sharing a snippet of their banter, June says: “I kid him on and say, ‘Anymore cheek and you’re out.’

“I’m quite quick at giving back what I get... double barrel sometimes,” laughs June. “He just goes away laughing.

“But he is very good. The first thing John always asks is how I’m keeping… and he always notices when I’ve not been eating properly.”

The Food Train has been just as vital in John’s life too. His dedication to giving back to the Glasgow community shines through, as he says: “I’ve got self-confidence from volunteering with Food Train. It has been one of the best experiences of my life.

“It came at the right time as I was alone after my parents passed away. I’m an outgoing personality but it was taking me a while to get back on track. It was a God send at the time.”

Alongside the crucial work The Food Train provides across Glasgow lies a stark truth behind the number of people in need of its food delivery service outweighing the number of volunteers the charity currently has.

Manager Chris Curtis explains: “Sometimes we’ve got a wee waiting list as we just can’t get to people. We’d love to expand and meet the demand. We’ll always have lots of Junes, but what we need to reach more people is more Johns.”


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The Food Train’s Glasgow office currently has 50 volunteers who spare one day a week ensuring their customers shopping lists are collected, purchased and delivered.

Aiming to increase his army of committed volunteers, Chris says: “A lot of older people are sitting at home and are perhaps struggling. They might be suffering from malnutrition and social isolation.

“Not everyone has family or friends nearby who can do a food shop that can help them.

“If John wasn’t here carrying in June’s food delivery, it means June won’t get food for the week and would go hungry... it’s as simple as that.”

Chris adds:”One of the key reasons why we keep our volunteers over a number of years I believe is because they can see the difference they are making in people’s lives.”

To contact Food Train for more info on volunteering in the city, contact the team at or tel: 0141 423 1722.