Northumberland Communities Together

Northumberland County Council is launching a new initiative to support the phenomenal volunteering networks that have been rallying support across the county in response to COVID-19.

Northumberland County Council is launching a new initiative to support the phenomenal volunteering networks that have been rallying support across the county in response to COVID-19.

The council is launching 'Northumberland Communities Together' - a dedicated team which will help harness the power of local community volunteers while making sure the county's most vulnerable residents are protected.

If you want to volunteer to help your community

There are lots of ways that you can help if you’d like to assist:

Across the UK voluntary organisations are helping people in their local communities during the COVID19 epidemic. In Northumberland, there are strong local communities and Northumberland County Council wants to support and harness the power of local community volunteers while making sure the most vulnerable residents are protected.
 
The council recognises the important role the community and voluntary sector organisations play in supporting people and is working to put in place a series of measures through our partnerships with key voluntary sector organisations to help us through this challenging time.
 
A team has been established to support local community activity under the banner of ‘Northumberland Communities Together’. The team are currently liaising with a variety of groups to bring together a network of key community links across the county.
 
These key community links will help to provide support, information, signposting and reassurance as well as identifying where further support is needed. Many areas already have volunteers in place who are coordinating with local partners including supermarkets to ensure residents have access to vital supplies.
 
The team is planning for every eventuality, there are robust processes in place, and a very experienced and capable team to deal with the issues the county may face over the coming weeks and months. Importantly, this needs to be done in a planned and managed way. 
 
We’re working with voluntary groups and community coordinators across Northumberland to build a picture of all that’s going on in our county. We want to make sure all our residents have access to what they need and to help support and assist all the great work that’s going on in our communities.
 

Keep in touch

Further information will be added to this page in the coming days to help support communities over the coming weeks and months. In the meantime, you can keep up to date via social media channels.
Social media is a great way to keep up to date and stay connected. However, it can also be a place where rumours and misinformation can spread easily. Always check that information is coming from a reputable source. Here are some twitter profiles that you can trust to pass on accurate information:

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Health Advice


The NHS has some simple advice to avoid catching or spreading COVID-19:
  • Stay at home if you have a high temperature, or a new continuous cough. More information can be found here – www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/selfisolation-advice
  • Wash your hands with soap and warm water often – do this for at least 20 seconds.
  • Always wash your hands when you get home or into work.
  • Use hand sanitiser gel if soap and water are not available.
  • When you cough or sneeze, cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or your sleeve. Do not sneeze into your hands if at all possible. 
  • Put used tissues in the bin straight away and wash your hands afterwards.
  • If you are an agile worker, wipe down your desk or equipment when you have finished with them. 
  • Try to avoid close contact with people who are unwell.
Do not go to a GP surgery, pharmacy or hospital if you have symptoms of coronavirus unless you are in immediate danger. Use the 111 online coronavirus service to find out what to do instead. 

Wellbeing Advice 

  • Don’t give yourself information overload. If you are finding yourself overwhelmed or anxious, take a break from watching the news or checking social media. 
  • Keep active as much as is feasible. It is still okay to go for a walk as long as you are outside and not attending any large group events. Northumberland has some breathtaking scenery, this could be a great excuse to explore your local area. Or you can stay inside and watch a work out video, there are a variety of free online resources for doing this, including youtube.
  • Stay social! Call friends and family members for a chat over the phone or by video message. Why not try writing a letter to someone? 
  • You can find more advice to take care of your mental wellbeing here - https://www.mentalhealth.org.uk/publications/looking-after-your-mental-health-during-coronavirus-outbreak or for more general wellbeing tips - www.nhs.uk/oneyou/everymind-matters 

 

Please be vigilant during this time. While most people have good intentions and genuinely want to help, there are people who want to exploit the situation.

Here are some short tips for staying safe:

  • Do not hand money or your credit/debit card to someone you don’t know or trust. 
  • Never write your PIN number down or give it to anyone else unless they are a trusted family member or friend. 
  • If someone is offering to help with shopping please make sure they’re introduced by someone you know and trust, or are part of the group of volunteers that are working with the Community Links Network.

 

Useful Web Links 

For the latest posters, videos and social media graphics you can go to the Public Health Campaign Resource Centre, for which you’ll need to register – https://campaignresources.phe.gov.uk/resources/campaigns