COMMUNITIES across Moorlands are pulling out all the stops to help the elderly and vulnerable amid the coronavirus pandemic. Here are just some of the initiatives which are evolving within our area…..
CHEADLE Town councillor Jamie Evans, who started the ‘Cheadle Staffs Volunteers Page’ on Facebook, has decided to incorporate a system where those who are in the ‘at-risk’ categories apply a red card to their window and those who are not at risk stick a green card on their window to show who needs help and where.
“I saw the scheme online and thought it was a very good idea,” he told the Times and Echo.
“I liked the simplicity of it and thought it would work here.
“The red and green signal code is so basic, it’s one that shouldn’t fail and one that is easy to carry out.
“Hopefully the people who display red will get their needs met by us (the volunteer group) and we will be able to look after them.
“We will be able to help the vulnerable ones with shopping, prescriptions and phone calls.”
A leaflet displaying the green-card-red-card information also stated that these people can also contact the following people by phone via the following numbers: Jamie Evans – 07547 360146; Alex Jackson – 07850 693633; Gary Bentley – 07812 111474.
Jamie continued: “Everyone seems to be clubbing together which is brilliant. Up to Monday we have helped four people and that number is only going to grow.”
Fellow group member Alex Jackson distributed the leaflets at various locations in Cheadle earlier this week.
He said: “I have dropped these off at all the main food shops in Cheadle.
“They will be at the end of the cash tills, if you know of anyone that maybe struggling or will struggle then please advise them that there is help in Cheadle.
“These are trustworthy people that will offer a helping hand for food runs or medicine drops.
“We should not have anyone in Cheadle struggling with food shops. Let’s band together and help each other out the best way we can.
“Tough times are ahead but we will get through this.”
Alex added: “We are also looking for a few more helpers to be honest.
“Since I put the Facebook post out, we have had a lot of calls and messages.”
Following Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s announcement on the tightening of restrictions on Monday evening, Jamie further posted to the Facebook page that he had created a letter for helpers to take when they are doing shopping for the vulnerable.
He said: “Following the news last night from the Prime Minister about going out when needed or if you support vulnerable people, we have created a letter to say who you are and why you are out to stop you being fined.
“This is also to show the supermarkets who have had people shopping four times a day saying they’re carers.
“If you want to help still then I have a letter for you.”
Elsewhere in the town, Cheadle Foodbank has stated it will be operating a reduced service to minimise the risk of spreading the virus but reassured residents that it will still be open at the usual times.
A spokesperson for the foodbank said: “To minimise the risks to all we are operating a reduced service but we would like to reassure our supporters and clients that we are still open at the usual times (Wednesdays from 9.30am to 11am and Fridays from 1.30pm to 3pm) for both donations and collection of food parcels at the Guildhall, Tape Street, Cheadle.”
IN THE Moorlands village of Alton, an ‘Alton Mutual Aid Group – COVID-19’ has been set up.
The community initiative has been set up to help those who are vulnerable with no other help and volunteers have been out and about distributing information sheets with lots of useful links and details of what help is on offer within the village including telephone numbers of ‘local volunteers’ who are willing to help residents who are in need of support at this time.
For further information call the Alton Parish Clerk on 01538 703272.
A COVID-19 Community Support Network has been set up by Checkley Parish Council
Members of the council are urging any vulnerable or elderly residents within the parish to get in touch with them if they need any help.
A spokesman said: “We are aware that Covid-19 is affecting our daily lives and we are working hard to create a ‘Community Support Network’ for our vulnerable and over 70 residents who are ‘shielding’ and self-isolating without support.
“We have created a Community Covid-19 information webpage which lists information on local community champions who are available for support.”
To find out more about the help being offered by Checkley Parish Council can either email email@example.com or go online to: www.checkleyparishcouncil.co.uk/covid-19-community-support.
Alternatively, anyone who does not have access to the internet, can call: Cllr Steph Akerman on 07895 168323; Cllr Bell 07895 098585; Cllr Bryan Stubbs 07706 666566; Cllr Wilkinson 07779 264277; Cllr Flunder 07836 526834; Cllr Pearce 01538 722369; Cllr McCormack 07967 522463; Cllr Trigger 01538 724688; Cllr Hulme 01889 507349; Cllr Peck 07971 544963; Cllr Buckley 01538 724617; or the parish clerk on 07840 456397 or 07793 613333.
Meanwhile, the council has confirmed that the Checkley Parish play area’s on Draycott Road, The Wentlows and Checkley Community Centre are now closed and that “the use of this equipment could result in police action.”
The spokesman added: “This crisis may separate us but it will not divide us.”
Draycott-in-the-Moors Parish Council has distributed a leaflet asking for the vulnerable members of their community to contact its councillors if they need help amid the coronavirus pandemic.
The council has stated that it would “like to understand how many of our residents are adversely affected by the coronavirus measures put in place and recommended by the Government.”
The leaflet went on to say that the council asked residents that needed help to contact them so they could be added onto a register while also appealing to others to volunteer and help offer their services to their close neighbours.
A spokesperson for Draycott Parish Council wrote: “We know that some people have family that are able to help them out and about but not everyone in our community is so fortunate.
“With this in mind, we are delivering this leaflet to all households asking if people who would like help to call to add their names onto a register held by the parish council.
“Of course, we also need people who could offer help to call too and then we can hopefully match people with close neighbours.
“There are many things we can do to help, but if there is a question where specialist knowledge is needed we can signpost to other service providers.
“GDPR regulations would see this data destroyed at the end of the crisis situation.
“We want to be good neighbours so if you need help or can offer help, then please contact by calling or text.”
Those who would like assist in the parish of Draycott can contact the council’s clerk Denise Wheat on 07812 056085, councillor Kate Bradshaw on 07715 284580 or Staffordshire County Councillor and Staffordshire Moorlands District Council Deputy Leader Councillor Mark Deaville on 01538 724194.
A ‘CORONAVIRUS Community Taskforce’ has been set up by Fulford Parish councillors to bring together the good forces of “activists” and residents to channel their efforts in responding effectively to those in the area that need support.
The group will help provide basic supplies and also help share ‘best practices’ in line with Government advice that the community can follow.
Fulford Parish Council Chairman Councillor Gareth Brunt said: “As people are aware, the country is facing an unprecedented challenge regarding the coronavirus.
“Our parish is not immune to the challenge, so we must do whatever it takes to tackle this together.
“On Thursday, March 19, I called an emergency meeting of the parish council to discuss a coordinated response to the crisis and formulate a plan going forward.
“I was proud to see the proactive and positive manner in which my councillors approached this, and each councillor had arrived at the meeting having suggestions from throughout their wards.
“We believe the solution and most coordinated approach to the situation across our parish is for the parish council, with the support of the community volunteers to lead from the front.
“We have suspended our regular news and replaced it with a coronavirus edition. This will be delivered to every household across the parish.
“It will contain vital information and recommendations for those who need support.”
Fellow parish council member Councillor Alec Sandiford added: “As the Coronavirus crisis continues, people in the parish of Fulford are rightly concerned about their family, friends and loved ones
“Even more people are keen to do something to help.
“This crisis is leaving the most vulnerable in our communities at risk and we are determined to do what we can to help them.
“That is why local councillors are setting up the Coronavirus Community Taskforce. This will coordinate our network in Blythe Bridge, Fulford, Meir Heath, Rough Close, Stallington and Saverley Green and will ensure those who are in the most need get support.”
For more information, visit the ‘Fulford Parish Council’ Facebook page or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
SUPPORTERS of Neighbourhood Watch across the Moorlands and beyond have been responding rapidly to the coronavirus COVID-19 crisis, helping to make a positive impact within their local communities.
A spokesman for the support organisation said: “This is a challenging time for all of us.
“We must highlight that health, safety and wellbeing must be our top priorities and at the heart of every decision we make.
“We have built a dedicated area on our new website: www.ourwatch.org.uk/news/NW_national-news/covid-19.
“Over the coming days, weeks and months we will be adding to this as the situation develops, sharing updated guidance, resources, partner links and encouraging communication between supporters through our social media channels, especially to share some of the positive ways communities are coming together to support one another through this.”
They added: “We wish you all health and safety.”
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