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#WakefieldCares - looking out for your neighbours

Published on 23 March 2020 02:41 PM

We’ve all been encouraged by the fantastic number of people already offering to help others in the Wakefield district during the Coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak.

We want to make sure that vulnerable people who have to isolate can get the support they need, either from friends and family, volunteers in the community, or if they are on their own, from Age UK Wakefield District, Wakefield Council and other partners.

If you’re worried about yourself or someone else who is alone and in isolation, here’s how you can help, or get help for them.

Volunteering

We’re all working closely with Wakefield Council and other partners, and we’ll be offering specific opportunities for volunteers over the coming weeks. However, more immediate help is needed in the community.

If you’re able to give help to people in your community, we’re encouraging you to start by being a good neighbour in your own streets and offering support to others.

We’ve prepared some contact cards that you can print and post through letter boxes to help you find out who needs help. It’s up to you where and how quickly you can offer help.

You could also encourage other neighbours who are able to join you in supporting people and form a small team to spread the load, provide back-up and do everything safely.

Please always check the latest government guidance on social distancing and self-isolation, to keep everyone safe and protected here.

Preparation

  • Print out some contact cards, enter your contact details (be willing to share your information and able to respond before dropping any cards)
  • Use a calendar to note agreed times to visit each person with items or for assistance
  • Find out which local cafés, restaurants or pubs are offering food for take-away or delivery
  • Call local shops to see if they can take phone orders and payment from the person self-isolating for you to collect
  • Look out for special shopping times or privileges for older or vulnerable people

Actions

  • Wash your hands regularly and thoroughly, with soap, for twenty seconds
  • Drop the cards through letterboxes in your street and keep a note of which houses you have covered each time
  • Create a log and note all calls asking for help and what help is required e.g. shopping list, pharmacy for prescription collection, activity needed – e.g. dog walking or help setting up mobiles for social media
  • Keep a list of people offering to support you; refer them to this information
  • Make sure you ask people to consent to you keeping their contact details safe, using them to provide assistance required and that you can share with other neighbours who are offering to join you to help
  • Where you can, keep in touch by text, app or phone with the people you are helping so you can be aware of any changes e.g. feeling ill, moving to another location, getting alternative support

Keeping yourself and others safe

  • Always check the latest government guidance on social distancing and self-isolation, to keep everyone safe and protected here.
  • Wash your hands regularly and thoroughly, with soap, for twenty seconds
  • Do not visit anyone if you are unwell; please make alternative arrangements for their care
  • If someone you visit is unwell with coronavirus symptoms, provide information on how to use NHS111 online coronavirus service if they become more unwell and can’t cope with symptoms at home
  • Look after your own wellbeing and physical health during this time and don’t put yourself at risk

If you need additional support

  • If you have to self-isolate and other volunteers are unable to pick up your commitments to this activity, please call Age UK Wakefield District on 01977 552114 and explain your situation
  • If you experience any difficulties with your activity call Age UK Wakefield District as above and someone will call you back to assist with advice

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