Sid Valley Help - still there for those in need as lockdown eases

Area co-ordinator Janet Briggs. Picture: Sid Valley Help

Area co-ordinator Janet Briggs. Picture: Sid Valley Help - Credit: Archant

Lockdown restrictions are easing, but Sid Valley Help say they are still there to support anyone in need.

'The face behind the phone' - helpline volunteer Ron Peppin. Picture: Sid Valley Help

'The face behind the phone' - helpline volunteer Ron Peppin. Picture: Sid Valley Help - Credit: Archant

Between mid-March and June, a team of volunteers looked after vulnerable people who were self-isolating, helping with shopping, collecting prescriptions, dog walking and gardening.

Some of those volunteers are now returning to their normal jobs, but many others have said they can continue through the summer, and beyond.

The chair of Sid Valley Help, Di Fuller, said: “There are still many people who are ‘shielding’ and although guidance for them is also easing at this time, many are still nervous about getting out and becoming independent, and others are too unwell to do so.

“We are confident that we have enough volunteers to meet demand at the present time, but are very happy to welcome new people.

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“While our number of volunteers has decreased, so have the number of new requests. We also know that some clients who requested support earlier are now feeling more confident to collect their own medication and/or supplement shopping.

“I am assured that the shops who have been providing a delivery service will continue to do so for now.

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“Another benefit of lockdown easing is that people may be seeing more of their families when previously they were not, if they lived away.

“Hopefully this means that fewer people are feeling the pressure of being at home and isolated.

“However, as more time passes and regular clubs and groups are missed and where social media is not used, some may be feeling lonely and missing social contact. If you sense this to be the case for someone you regularly see, please ask them if they would like a telephone friend to call regularly.

“For many younger people there is the worry of disrupted lives, job losses and money worries. Sid Valley Help has links to support for those struggling with their mental health and wellbeing.

“Finally, we have received many donations to support our work during the pandemic. Some have been anonymous and so we have not been able to say ’thank you’. I would like to take the opportunity to thank everyone who has supported us with donations.”

For information on local shops offering deliveries, or to find out how to make a donation, visit . To arrange telephone befriending, call 01395 892011.

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