MORE community groups are springing up locally to support vulnerable people and those self-isolating amid the coronavirus pandemic.
BCP Council has joined up with local volunteers to launch the Together We Can scheme to help coordinate efforts.
Council leader Cllr Vikki Slade said: “We are wholeheartedly committed to ensuring our most vulnerable residents are supported and kept as safe and well as possible in these difficult times.
“We have already seen a wide range of grassroots support instigated in the wake of the coronavirus and it’s fantastic to see all the offers of community support that have come forward.
“The principles behind the Together We Can community response is to nurture this goodwill and ensure it is fully supported.”
The initiative is being supported by Community Action Network, a charity that already offers support to more than 2,500 voluntary and community groups across Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole.
Together We Can intends to work through existing local neighbourhood structures, voluntary groups, and local councillors to ensure all three towns have access to support, advice, and practical help.
Cllr Slade added: “We are working quickly to mobilise in a way that protects residents from both the effects of the virus, and from the more negative effects of the necessary social distancing that are being implemented to limit the spread of the disease.
“As part of the launch of Together We Can we are calling on all those people wanting to help to get in touch with us. Together we can get through this.”
Similarly to Hampshire County Council, BCP Council has also asked bus companies to accept pensioner bus passes before 9.30am so they ca get to the shops early.
People wanting to get involved in the community response are being encouraged to sign up online at bcpcouncil.gov.uk/TogetherWeCan.
In the New Forest the Waterside Self-isolation Support Group, which has been set up with a Facebook page, is offering to collect shopping, medication and take dogs for walks.
Anyone who needs help can call 07782 951 660 or email email@example.com.
Another group offering similar help is the Netley Marsh Volunteers, whose area includes Woodlands.
Contact Willie Bewes, the village agent for Age Concern, via Williebewes.firstname.lastname@example.org or 07791 009217.
The Totton Isolation Group has also been launched and can be contacted by searching its name on Facebook or by calling 07733 425 068 or emailing email@example.com.
Other Facebook groups include:
- New Milton Covid-19 Support Group
- Lymington and Pennington Coronavirus Assistance and Support
- Ringwood Coronavirus Assistance
- Lyndhurst and Emery Down Emergency Assistance
- Bransgore Coronavirus Isolation Help + Support Group
- Helping hands, open arms, new forest and surrounding areas
- Brockenhurst Covid Support Group