Supporting Each Other – 5 Ways to Help Now

In times like this, few things are as comforting as the kindness of others. Despite self-isolation and social distancing measures, communities across the county and the rest of the country are coming together in a show of support. Whether it’s setting up virtual community groups or helping out your next door neighbour, there are lots of things you can do to get involved. Here are five ways to support your local community throughout the coronavirus outbreak.


Help out your neighbours

If any of your neighbours are elderly or alone, and you’re able to provide some help, pop a note through their door introducing yourself, where you live and your phone number. Let them know that if they’re self-isolating, you can help with collecting shopping, posting letters, urgent supplies or even just a friendly phone call. Shropshire Council’s website has some volunteer guidelines here.

If you drop anything off to them, do wash your hands thoroughly before and after touching doorbells and handles, and step back several metres when they open the door. Encourage them to wash their hands after they put shopping away. Alternatively, you can leave the shopping a their doorstep.

The virus is most dangerous to the elderly and those with pre-existing health conditions, so any support given to these groups of people can be very beneficial.


Shop responsibly

Only take what you need from your local shops. If it isn’t essential, consider leaving it for older or vulnerable people who might need it more. Avoid touching doors and surfaces wherever you can, or cover your hands with gloves or a paper towel when you do.

Many local shops are now seeking volunteers to help with home delivery for those who can’t collect their groceries in person – speak to your shop owner if you’re able to help. Remember to always wash your hands after shopping. The NHS has some good advice on handwashing.


Practice safe social distancing

If you’re walking, running or cycling around our local area as part of your daily exercise, make sure you keep a good social distance from anyone else you might bump into. Cross the road to give people space, and only take exercise alone or with someone you live with. The latest government information on safe social distancing can be found here.


Look after yourself

As well as staying at home and looking after your mental and physical wellbeing, do take extra care in your day-to-day activities. With the NHS stretched to capacity at present, your local surgery or A&E may not be able to support with day-to-day accidents or household mishaps at the moment.

Back injuries from gardening, pulled muscles or nasty cuts and scrapes are likely to take a backseat in primary care at the moment, so it’s important to be careful. If you do suspect you may have coronavirus, continue to stay at home and use the NHS 111 coronavirus service for advice.


Check on family and friends

Many people are self-isolating alone at the moment; if you know of anyone who’s living alone, do check up on them with phone calls whenever you can. If there’s anything they need, it’s great to help out where you can, but sometimes just hearing another person’s voice and having a friendly chat is enough. We all have to look after each other at the moment.

We’ll be posting more ideas on community support activities and advice on looking after your mental and physical wellbeing over the coming weeks, so do check back when you can.

In the meantime, stay safe!