We can help you if you have no friends or family you can call on and:
- you're self-isolating because you or a member of your household has tested positive for coronavirus or you have been in close contact with someone who has tested positive for coronavirus
- you're struggling to meet your basic needs because of financial, social or health restrictions related to COVID-19 (for example, you are shielding)
- finding it difficult to leave your home for any other reason (for example, because of a disability)
We can help you with shopping, accessing a supermarket priority slot, fetching your prescription, transport to COVID vaccination centres or finding someone to have a chat with.
Unfortunately, we cannot help with domestic jobs or looking after pets.
How to get the help you need
If you need help you can use our online form to register for it.
Register for help
Or you can phone us on tel: 01629 535091. Our phone lines are open on Monday to Friday from 9am to 5pm.
One of our approved partner volunteer organisations will be in touch with you as soon as possible to offer you the help you need.
When you make a request for help, we pass it on to the local Council for Voluntary Service, or CVS within one working day who then arrange for one of their volunteers to help you. They do that as soon as they can, usually within a day or so.
Don't give your bank details, bank card or PIN to anyone, and don't give cash to anyone who is not part of this volunteer scheme or you already know.
Check that the person who comes to help you is from the voluntary organisation who contacted you.
If you feel unwell please seek advice from NHS 111.
If you've registered but you've heard nothing you don't need to register again. Please contact us on tel: 01629 535091.
What help is available
Our Community Response Unit can help you if you have an urgent issue which means you cannot meet your basic needs.
The range of support on offer includes:
- access to food delivery from supermarkets and other commercial food outlets offering a food delivery or click and collect service, or help from a volunteer with food shopping and food deliveries - you'll need to pay for your shopping. The national system to deliver food parcels is no longer available
- access to food supply such as food banks if you can confirm you are unable to pay for food
- collecting and delivering medical prescriptions from a pharmacy or supermarket, the normal charges for prescriptions will apply
- a friendly chat over the phone to help prevent loneliness if you are feeling isolated
- offering advice about your health and wellbeing, staying mobile and active and help to quit smoking and lose weight
- financial support and information on welfare benefits, debt and managing money
- if you're struggling to get to your COVID-19 vaccine appointment the Community Response Unit can help you to find suitable transport options
If you're clinically extremely vulnerable
On 22 February 2021 the government published a roadmap out of the national restrictions for the whole population, which explains how restrictions will be eased over time. As part of this roadmap, from 1 April 2021 clinically extremely vulnerable individuals are no longer advised to shield.
Although clinically extremely vulnerable individuals will no longer be advised to shield, it's still recommended to take extra precautions to protect yourself while the virus is still spreading in our communities.
Going to shops and pharmacies
While you're not advised to avoid going to the shops, you may wish to continue using online delivery for food and essential shopping, or to rely on family and friends.
If you do go out to the shops or pharmacy, consider going at quieter times of the day.
If you've already registered for priority access to supermarket delivery slots using Shielding Support by 31 March 2021, then the participating supermarkets will continue to offer priority access until 21 June 2021.
Help is still available for those who need it. NHS volunteers can provide support for shopping, collecting prescriptions, friendly phone calls if you feel lonely or isolated or transport to medical appointments. You can find out more or ask for support from NHS Volunteer Responders or tel: 0808 196 3646 from 8am to 8pm.
And our Community Response Unit can also help if you have no family, friends or neighbours who can support you. If you need help you can use our online form to register for it.
Register for help
Or you can phone tel: 01629 535091. Our phone lines are open on Monday to Friday from 9am to 5pm.
Accessing a supermarket priority slot if you're not clinically extremely vulnerable
If you're vulnerable because you are self-isolating either temporarily or long-term as a result of COVID-19, our Community Response Unit can help you get a supermarket priority slot at Tesco and Iceland supermarkets to access food and essential items if you meet certain criteria.
- vulnerable people who have no other support network to shop for them
- carers who can do online shopping on behalf of vulnerable people
- care homes
- referrals from food banks
- anyone who received an official shielding letter, but didn't make the cut-off date for registration for shielding priority slots
- individuals receiving support from mental health services
If you think you're eligible, and would like a slot, contact the Community Response Unit tel: 01629 535091. Our phone lines are open on Monday to Friday from 9am to 5pm. Or you can register for help online to get supermarket support and a member of our team will generate a priority slot for you (delivery charges apply).
To speed things up, we recommend that you have a Tesco or Iceland account. But we can help with that if you don't have one.
We can generate a slot for you. You'll need to have a Tesco online account but this can be done afterwards. It just makes the process quicker if you already have one.
We can generate a pass code for you, then you'll be able to access a shopping slot. But you'll have to log on to the Iceland website between 9am and 1pm on a Thursday to get your slot.