We recognise that this is a challenging period for us all and even more so for vulnerable people. As Neighbourhood Watch we believe it is very important that we all take care and protect ourselves as a priority and where possible we safely carry on the great work of supporting and staying connected with our communities.
In England, between 5th November - 2nd December, national restrictions mean that:
- You should only leave home for food, medical reasons, exercise, education, or work
- You must work from home if you can
- You should avoid travel unless essential
- Schools and essential shops will remain open
There are a variety of ways however in which we can support our loved ones and communities through these restrictions.
Keeping your loved ones safe
The most valuable thing we can all do is keep ourselves and our loved safe - physically and emotionally.
- Our website signposts where you can get accurate advice and support with your emotional wellbeing.
- Sign up for the FREE Festival Of Discovery running online on 20th and 21st November for lively discussions on hot topics, entertainment, things to make and do, a chance to recharge your wellbeing, and real-life community stories from across the UK.
Supporting your community
There are a variety of ways in which you can support your community depending on your individual situation. A few ideas are:
- set up a Calling Tree to support those who are not connected via social media
- join forces with a Covid-19 Mutual Aid group
- connect with your neighbours with this Calling Card
- connect with your neighbours with this Kindness Card
- If you are, or you know someone who is, facing loneliness have a look at our Loneliness Toolkit
- sign up as a NHS Volunteer Responder - recruitment now open across England
The NHS Volunteer Responders programme, set up by NHS England, is here to help people in England to stay safe during coronavirus. NHS Volunteer Responders have now completed more than a million tasks! Following an initial recruitment campaign for new volunteers in 70 local authority areas, they have now opened up recruitment across England. This is in response to the lockdown that began on 5 November and because demand for the volunteers’ support is continuing to rise. It will also help to meet NHS requests for additional direct support during this winter. At the same time, they are encouraging anyone who signed up as an NHS Volunteer Responder in March but had to step down due to other commitments, to re-join the programme and give as much time as they can.
As the programme evolves it will focus on direct support to the NHS with tasks such as the delivery of equipment to monitor vulnerable COVID-19 patients in their homes, and with stewarding people at vaccination clinics. They will also continue to support vulnerable people by delivering food and medication, and through Check In and Chat phone calls. They are not intending to replace any local volunteering activity. They aim to work collaboratively with volunteering leads in local areas.
If you are interested in joining as a volunteer you can attend an online meetings by clicking the link below at the specified time:
Thursday 19th November, 11.30-12.30 Join Microsoft Teams Meeting
Thursday 3rd December, 11.30-12.30 Join Microsoft Teams Meeting
Thursday 17th December, 11.30-12.30 Join Microsoft Teams Meeting
Beware of scams and crimes
Criminals are using the COVID-19 pandemic to scam the public. To help you avoid becoming a victim, we have highlighted on our website the wide variety of COVID-19 scams and crimes which have arisen, key protection advice and guidance on how to report these scams.
Community response stories
For further inspiration on ways in which you can support your community, have a look at our Community Response Stories. If you have a story you would like to share, please submit it using this form.
Domestic abuse survivors
Are you or someone you know is a domestic abuse survivor, the information below may be very useful.
- Women’s Aid Network: Many survivors will be feeling unsafe isolating in a house with an abusive person, and isolated from their support networks. Women’s Aid have put together some advice and information about support available. See Women’s Aid COVID-19 Resource Hub
- Safe Lives: They have put together some resources for people living with domestic abuse, and the professionals supporting them. They have also produced guidance for friends and family.
- Refuge: They are there for you if you, or someone you care about, is experiencing domestic abuse. Phone the National Domestic Abuse Helpline on 0808 2000 247. They also have a range of digital resources available at refuge.org.uk and nationaldahelpline.org.uk.