Staff at Swanton’s Southfields service in Falkirk have reached out to big companies to help the people they support to cope with lockdown challenges.

Service Manager Magda Minto and her colleagues were worried that the closure of food establishments used by the people they support, and the delay of a much-anticipated music release could cause distress.

But after explaining their worries to representatives at McDonald’s, KFC and Burger King, as well as the team at NOW Music, the Southfields staff were bowled over by their generosity.

Magda said: “The people we support have specific routines, and when they are disrupted, it can be difficult for them to manage.

“To some of the people we support, being told their favourite food outlets are closed would really upset them.

“By using the packaging sent to us, we can recreate part of the experience they get when visiting those food outlets and it’s really helped. We’re extremely grateful to them for making an effort to help us.”

For Ryan McAlinden, who is a big fan of the NOW music compilations, the lockdown has presented a unique problem.

Ryan had been eagerly anticipating the release of NOW 105, which was due to go on sale in the early summer. Sadly, the pandemic has pushed back the release date, so Southfield Deputy Manager Susan Marshall contacted the team at NOW to see if they could help.

Although they weren’t able to provide a copy of NOW 105, the kind representatives sent Ryan a selection of CDs from the NOW back catalogue, which has been gratefully received.

Magda added: “Susan explained how much the NOW CDs mean to Ryan and the company couldn’t have been nicer.

“They hadn’t manufactured NOW 105, so there was no way to get that to us, but they’ve sent six CDs over to us and been incredibly sweet. It means a lot to us that companies like NOW are willing to go the extra mile to help fans like Ryan.”

During the lockdown, staff have lifted spirits by throwing a rainbow party for the people they support and having a surprise visit from Tigger.

Magda said: “The rainbow party went brilliantly – we even had music from a bagpiper, who played to us from a safe distance outside.

“Tigger was a big favourite with the people we support too. There were lots of happy faces during his visit!”