A funding mechanism has been established by Orkney Islands Council to support isles residents in buying goods from the isles shops.
With internal ferry travel restrictions currently in place due to Covid-19, isles residents are mainly reliant on island-based shops for their shopping rather than mainland supermarkets - where prices may be cheaper.
The scheme will see each isles resident allocated £5 per week for the next four weeks to spend in a shop on their island – with the fund administered with support from the local community council.
For those islands without shops, the fund will be paid directly to the families on the island.
The money is coming from the £30m Food Fund established by the Scottish Government, from which the Council has been allocated £99,000.
Council Leader and Councillor for Stromness and the South Isles, James Stockan, said: " Our isles residents don’t have the choice of shops that mainland residents do – they shouldn’t be travelling in to the supermarkets due to the current restrictions and also can’t access supermarket home deliveries – that’s 2900 folk who’s choice is restricted.
"Isles shops have been doing a great job in supporting residents during this difficult time – keeping their stock levels higher than they might normally do, bringing in additional items that they might not normally stock, offering home deliveries and ensuring social distancing for folk who are coming into the shop – and it’s important that we return that support.
“An initial 4 week period of this will cost in the region of £58,000 – if restrictions go on much longer than that then we’ll need further funding and we continue to lobby the Scottish Government for additional funding – as we’ve been doing on many other issues."
Funding will be available from Monday (20 April). Queries on the fund should be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org