One Northern Devon has today put out a call to the business community in North Devon and Torridge to see if furloughed workers or those with extra capacity would like to join local teams volunteering to support vulnerable isolated residents with some key tasks.
Local businesses are offering their support to the Covid-19 response but are not always sure how best to help. One Northern Devon has set up simple and single contact points so people and business know the support that is required in their own community.
Anyone wishing to register their support can go to https://onenortherndevon.co.uk/volunteer/ or call 01271 33 77 99.
Since the beginning of the Covid-19 outbreak, One Northern Devon has co-ordinated the approach across each of the ‘One Communities’ across towns and parishes of Northern Devon ensuring that all towns can access the support they have identified they need. There are now hundreds of additional volunteers working in their communities to support vulnerable people.
Volunteers are needed to collect and deliver prescriptions and shopping and also to check in and chat with people who are self-isolating or have been told to shield at home to ensure they are not getting lonely. People with organisation skills who could join their local One Community Team in co-ordinating the local efforts are also being sought. Anyone with skills in social media and communication, business planning, project management, safeguarding and customer service skills are particularly welcome, but all skills and experience are welcomed.
Chair of One Northern Devon, Dr John Womersley said, “During this difficult time, many employees are furloughed and may have time on their hands. Studies have shown that volunteering can improve people’s social connections and is positively associated with good mental health and wellbeing – it’s also a great opportunity to help your community”.
One Northern Devon is a partnership of NHS, council, emergency service, business and voluntary sector organisations across North Devon and Torridge. During the COVID-19 pandemic One Northern Devon has supported the mobilisation of the resources of all partners to ensure the ‘One Communities’ across our towns and parishes can support vulnerable people to be able to self-isolate safely.
Dr Womersley continued, “We recognise that not all businesses are in a position to offer support at this time and that many are in exceptionally difficult circumstances and worried about their future. There are health and wellbeing resources on https://onenortherndevon.co.uk/ to help businesses look after their staff during this period of uncertainty. There are also links to organisations that offer free financial advice to employees alongside the wide range of support available from Local Authorities and the support local business organisations such as North Devon Plus can offer.