Posts From June, 2020

Together we are fighting Coronavirus Covid-19 (Flintshire CC) 

Flintshire County Council have been working in partnership with Flintshire Local Voluntary Council (FLVC)  to ensure vulnerable people receive appropriate support.  Prior to Covid-19, (FLVC)  already had access to a directory of validated community organisations i.e. those who were constituted, had received appropriate training and had policies in place, such as safeguarding. This Directory is updated as new community groups set up. FLVC employ two staff based with the Council’s Single Point of Access (SPoA) team signposting and supporting individuals to access the voluntary and community support available across Flintshire. Furloughed staff from organisations who work closely with the Council have been encouraged to volunteer via the Volunteering Wales website. Over 200 people have stepped forward to volunteer in Flintshire, 84 individuals chose to volunteer for the council and virtual training has been put in place. Together we are fighting Coronavirus COVID-19 

 

Vale Heros (Vale of Glamorgan C) 

Vale of Glamorgan Council has established a Crisis Support Team to provide information and assistance and works closely with Glamorgan Voluntary Service  and Cardiff & Vale Age Connects, directing people to organisations that can help. Vale Heros  is a searchable database that helps connect individuals in need of support with those offering it. People can register if they need assistance with grocery shopping or medicine collection, for example, as can individuals or groups able to help with such tasks. Currently, numerous people are volunteering across the Vale, with over 2000 coming forward since March when the Covid-19 crisis hit.

A new Vale Heros Crisis Fund has also been established to offer grants of up to £3,000 to community groups, the voluntary sector, town and community councils and eligible businesses.

Community Resilience Hubs (Rhondda Cynon Taf CBC) 

Rhondda Cynon Taf County Borough Council quickly established seven Community Resilience Hubs. comprising of  ‘virtual’ multi-disciplinary and organisational teams from Council services and partners, led by Council Community Coordinator.

The Community Resilience Teams contact all the people who request assistance, and those on the NHS Shielded lists, to provide support with shopping, picking up prescriptions, dog walking, and befriending services, matching the needs of residents with local volunteers, community groups, partner organisations, or by providing staff support.

To date, over 2800 residents have been supported by the Community Resilience Centres and close to 11,000 residents on the NHS Shielded list contacted by ‘phone with an active offer of support. 

The council were overwhelmed by over 1100 applications for volunteers and have currently paused recruitment as they work to mobilise Community Resilience Volunteers in response to local need.

Community Connectors in Powys (Powys CC) 

Powys County Council, Powys Teaching Health Board and Powys Association of Voluntary Organisations (PAVO), as key partners of Powys Regional Partnership Board ,  established a Community Sector Emergency Response Team (C-Sert) to coordinate and support emergency response to people in the community who may be affected by COVID 19 through formal and informal volunteers. The CSERT, with the assistance of thirteen Community Connectors based around the county, arrange practical support for vulnerable (shielding and non-shielding) residents from local volunteers through local support networks. In terms of services offered through the CSERT, is provided with shopping and medication collection as well as a befriending service to help tackle loneliness and social isolation. Powys has around 4,000 volunteers across the county at any given time. The CSERT have been very pro-active in increasing formal volunteer support during the pandemic

Pembrokeshire Community Hub (Pembrokeshire CC) 

The Pembrokeshire Community Hub is a one-stop shop for any support required during the current pandemic, from help with shopping to a friendly telephone call. It is a partnership between Pembrokeshire County Council, Pembrokeshire Association of Voluntary Services (PAVS), Hywel Dda University Health Board and Delta Wellbeing. Residents who would like to volunteer are signposted to a web based interactive directory of community support organisations that are registered with PAVS, or they can volunteer directly through Volunteering Wales.  94 Community Support Groups have registered with PAVS, and over 600 volunteers have registered with Volunteering Wales.

Newport City Council 

Newport City Council (NCC) has put in place a robust set of practical support mechanisms to help those in the community who are most vulnerable. This has been helped significantly by the already implemented community hub approach supported by the Council’s spatial data team. The council has maintained its vital contact centre to continue service support and has put in place a free phone number for the hubs. Working with Volunteer Matters and GAVO, Newport has over 300 volunteers working in communities. NCC is enhancing foodbank parcels with extra essential items. The council is helping to provide baby bundles (milk, nappies, wet wipes etc.) that have been purchased for distribution to the most vulnerable as identified by health visitors as well as activity packs for young children and well-being packs for older residents. 

Joint COVID-19 Co-ordinators group (Isle of Anglesey CC) 

The Isle of Anglesey County Council have established a joint Covid-19 Co-ordinators group across Statutory and third sector organisations. The group, chaired by the Council’s Leader is part of the island’s response to the pandemic. It consists of the Council and the third sector led by Medrwn Mȏn and Menter Mȏn who are working to mobilise Covid-19 community support groups on the island. The co-ordinators group have developed a Covid-19 community guidance. The council has 860 registered volunteers operating within 36 area teams. Sixty of these volunteers are classed as specialist volunteers as they have a current DBS. Through community support, volunteer groups and ‘neges’ meals service around 675 individuals are being supported, with a further 325 individuals receiving assistance with prescription collection, food shopping and referrals to various support services.

Gwynedd Council 

Gwynedd Council have deployed 23 officers to create a COVID Support Team set up to make contact and deal with inquiries from all resident who are isolated and/or concerned about their circumstances due to COVID-19, contact details are available on the Council’s website. Within the first 11 days in April the councils Team had over 1,000 calls from self-isolating and high risk shielding individuals. The calls for advice, signing up for the emergency foodbox and/or to arrange collection of medication. The Befriending schemes support vulnerable residents with shopping, collecting medicines, preparation and delivery of food etc. Alongside Menter Mon, Gwynedd Council have collated a list of food businesses across Gwynedd offering a range of service support residents during the pandemic. There are 600 volunteers registered to the Volunteer Bank of the local Volunteer Council, Mantell Gwynedd.

Ceredigion 

Ceredigion County Council (CCC) have been working in partnership with Ceredigion Association of Voluntary Organisations (CAVO) to coordinate the volunteer response to COVID-19. Clear process has been put in place for individuals wishing to volunteer in different communities, whereby CAVO ‘match’ volunteers with groups or organisations. As of the 24th April 2020, 192 volunteers had signed up in response to COVID-19. CAVO and CCC are working in partnership to update resource lists three times a week. These are available on the Local Authority website and include a directory of meal deliveries, shopping and prescription collection, support groups in each community across Ceredigion.

Torfaen Community Support Mobile App (Torfaen CBC)  

Torfaen Council launched the Torfaen Community Support Mobile App on the 27th April 2020 to help to quickly and easily register volunteers who want to offer their time, and to help Torfaen’s most vulnerable residents register for support and enable them to be matched with the most appropriate provision. Residents who sign up to the App will be able to make requests for: collection of medication; shopping for food and other essentials, befriending services etc. The App has been developed by Syncsort one of the council’s technology partners. The app will aid the council’s newly established Community Support Hub to operate more efficiently and will be particularly helpful as resident’s needs grow and volunteer skills and availability changes over time. The council, with the help of partners, including Bron Afon and Torfaen Leisure Trust , and alongside community groups and volunteers is coordinating and providing direct support. A web version of the app is also available via the Covid-19 page on the council’s website for those who do not have access to mobile devices. If residents have no access to the web they can call 01495 762200 for assistance. Torfaen Council also has ambitions to use the app long term to support services post Covid19 to coordinate Volunteers.

Our Monmouthshire (Monmouthshire CC) 

Monmouthshire County Council’s Community Support Team ‘assess the need’ and in partnership with volunteers offer a range of support services, such as: collection and delivery of shopping and medicines, provision of food parcels and ready meals to those in need; befriending services etc.

A digital platform https://ourmonmouthshire.org/ has been developed to complement existing activity which will include time banking functionality. There are 1000+ volunteers active in the county. Area Development Teams have built a picture of the volunteer requirements for each of the 60+ local community action groups being supported by the council and key partners to match need and demand of volunteers.

Together for Cardiff (Cardiff C) 

Cardiff Council’s   Together for Cardiff scheme was set up at the onset of the COVID-19 emergency.  More than 1,200 are now registered with the scheme that has acted as a brokering service, matching people who want to help with volunteering opportunities across the city. Volunteer Cardiff  developed in partnership with third sector organisations, offers a on-line search facility of local organisations and businesses that will deliver to people’s doorstep and where residents can register to volunteer. Work is ongoing to establish a network of anchor organisations i.e. trusted and established organisations to support the many new organisations being created as a direct response to the COVID-19 outbreak.

Working with Council staff, volunteers play an important role in preparing and delivering emergency food and essentials parcels for people experiencing difficulties getting supplies during the outbreak because they are self-isolating or because of the financial impact of the crisis. The Council’s Food Team has just under 1,200 volunteers and relies on between 10-15 volunteers per day to pick, pack and deliver food.

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