Supporting Older People During Lockdown

By Tony Bloor | May 27 2020

Supporting Older People During Lockdown

Blog Category: Campaign updateBlog Tags:

  • Profile

    Our community has been hit very hard by the Covid-10 Pandemic and in particular those having to be shielded and seen as extremely vulnerable due to frailty, poor health and living alone often far from family and relatives. Our highly popular older people’s activity hub in Cumberland Market had to close its doors to our many and diverse elderly service users on Friday 20th March 2020 by Government Edict. However, on Monday 23rd March 2020 we launched a range of new services as our response to the Covid-19 Emergency:

    • Telephone befriending and support
    • Volunteer befrienders
    • Recruited and trained younger residents as new able-bodied volunteers
    • Telephone Friendship Small Groups
    • Signposting and troubleshooting including making referrals
    • Troubleshooting IT issues (doorstep and over the phone)
    • Accepting referrals from wide range of agencies
    • Weekly online interactive newsletters
    • Supporting WhatsApp groups in 5 different home languages with volunteer interpreters
    • Regular printed newsletters to those not online and upon request
    • home deliveries of shopping and essential supplies (to Covid-19 & self-isolating households)
    • Emergency Food Bank (now open to residents of all ages including extended families)

    We recruited, trained and now support many new younger residents as able-bodied volunteers to help us in providing the above new services. We had to expand our Food Bank to include the elderly within extended family networks and vulnerable needy families with young children.

    TO DATE: We have made 2000 phone calls, supported 300 vulnerable elderly residents living on their own and carried out  hundreds of home deliveries. Our Food Bank in addition, has supported 100 families with 250 young children with 300 meals a week.

    We anticipate that our immediate crisis response services are likely to continue to be needed for the foreseeable future.



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Tony Bloor