Updated: Apr 25
Don't forget, we're here to support you.
Thanks for offering to help in your community. We are working things out as we go along and this is an entirely volunteer led effort, so we may make mistakes.
Majority of issues at the moment are to do with being in lockdown rather than people being ill. However keeping good humoured during a period of stress can take it’s toll so do look after yourself. As the big man said ‘Love your neighbour, as yourself’ so don’t feel guilty if you need to say no sometimes and put your own needs first. There are lots of people available to help!
However some guidance I think is perhaps helpful right now. So
1. When you first meet the person give them your contact details, maybe on a card if you are happy with that? Then if they need to find your details again it’s in a clear place.
2. Don’t assume they need help with everything. Many people are self-isolating because of an age definition or similar, rather than not being capable of organising things. (We all need to feel in control of as much as possible right now!)
3. The folk who need a lot of support may already be set up with carers and well known to their GP and social care.
4. Be gracious if they want to offer you something in return, but say no if you can. If they insist, just keep a note of anything so it’s clear what the arrangement was.
5. Their information is private, so try to only keep a copy of it somewhere secure. Don’t leave information lying around if you can avoid that.
6. Don’t share the details of the person you’ve visited on social media, or with friends/neighbours.
7. Try and find a common interest or point of reference to refer back to. E.g. sports team, a joke, music, gardening that you can ask about next time you speak to each other.
8. Ask if it’s ok to check in with them again, and if there is anything they might like to be reminded about – such as prescriptions being collected. However it’s not up to you to remember for them!
9. Try and keep things simple.,e.g.I’m happy to see if I can find any self-raising flour, next time I’m out, as I know I need some too. Rather than rushing to help that instant! It may not be possible for you to drop everything next time, and it’s better to be consistently helpful than all or nothing. (If that makes sense!)
10. Don’t go into the house- maintain social distancing by chatting from the doorstep through a window, or standing in the garden, while they are in the house.
11. Take ID badges with you (if ECN ones aren’t available use a work one if you have one, or ideally limit visits to people you already know).
12. Keep in touch with the network – if you have any concerns we can help with please email firstname.lastname@example.org and one of us will follow up within 48 hours at the latest.