How to help your neighbour during Covid-19 emergency

Residents in St Albans district who want to help others during the Covid-19 crisis are urged to join a major scheme run by a voluntary agency.

Councillor Chris White, leader of St Albans City and District Council, has highlighted the project run by Communities 1st, an organisation that supports charities and community groups.

Cllr White, speaking at a meeting of the council’s cabinet, said: “It’s great to see local communities organising to look after their neighbours.  

“I’m aware, though, that there is a rise in scams with criminals taking advantage of the situation and there are dangers inherent in sharing details about vulnerable people.

Think carefully about safety
“So, I’d really urge people to think carefully about safety. Our partner, Communities 1st, has a well-organised scheme that people can sign up to if they want to volunteer to help.”

Communities 1st is looking for volunteers to help handle calls from vulnerable people as well as collect and deliver shopping and provide digital services training.

There will also be a need for dog walkers, postcard pals, telephone friends and street champions who will keep an eye on particular neighbourhoods.

Huge demand for help
Stephen Craker, chief executive of Communities 1st, said: “We’re pleased that the council is supporting our endeavours to organise volunteers effectively during this public health emergency.

“We’re anticipating that there will be a huge demand for help across the district from people struggling to get out of their homes because of age, disability or illness.

“By becoming a Compassionate Community Connector, you can be confident that your work will be coordinated and directed towards those in real need.

“People who are being helped by our volunteers will have the assurance that appropriate safeguarding measures are in place.”

To volunteer:
Email: [email protected]
Tel: 020 3940 4865 on weekdays from 1pm to 3pm.


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