Northumberland charity Bell View continues to spread kindness through crisis - this is how it can help
Belford-based Bell View was already fully embedded in its local community and dedicated to delivering services to older and more vulnerable people.
“We have been using our experience, resources, networks and capacity to deliver and coordinate numerous forms of new support or help across a large rural community in this time of crisis,” he added.
One of the new initiatives has been the friendship phone line, which offers reassurance, a listening ear and emotional support or advice.
So far, there are 12 volunteers making phone calls every couple of days to more than 100 beneficiaries, with those volunteers regularly feeding back to charity staff, signposting issues that are flagged up which require further guidance and support.
“This is creating lasting new friendships and distracting those receiving calls from the current crisis, which has brought about an increase in fear, loneliness, anxiety and uncertainty,” Paul said. “This will and has already seen an improvement in the mental health and wellbeing of beneficiaries.”
Other new or additional services currently being delivered by Bell View include a shopping pick-up and delivery service, a prescription/medication service, a frozen meals service, and databases of volunteers who can help as well as those who are vulnerable or self-isolating and need help.
Over the Easter weekend, the charity picked up and distributed over a wide area more than 50 food parcels, which came via Age UK Northumberland following a donation by Geordie Shore star Vicky Pattison.
So far, staff and volunteers have:
:: With help from the community, delivered 1,000 flyers, stating the ways in which Bell View can help, with clear contact information;
:: Received and responded to over 130 calls for help and support;
:: Delivered more than 60 frozen meals;
:: Delivered more than 65 food parcels;
:: Delivered more than 400 prescriptions;
:: Bought and delivered 60 lots of shopping;
:: Liaised and offered advice/support/help on a regular basis to other areas coordinating a similar response, such as Lowick, Bamburgh, Ellingham and Seahouses;
:: Posted numerous social-media messages, asking for help, keeping people updated and posting advice and where to get help.