Covid-19- How you can help
Many students have kindly volunteered their time during the pandemic to help support their local communities. Whether it has been helping with a neighbour’s shopping or befriending a socially isolated person through regular phone calls – so many of you have found ways in which you are able to help your local community.
With the easing of restrictions, many face to face volunteering opportunities are now returning. As well as in-person opportunities, there are still many ways you can volunteer remotely/from home.
Below we have some suggestions for opportunities which are available locally and nationally to support those affected by the coronavirus. We would also recommend checking our Virtual Volunteering page to find out about ways to volunteer whilst at home.
Remember, only volunteer if it is safe to do so and always follow current guidelines.
Below are links to sign up to volunteer in support of the local community response
Chester/ Cheshire West through the Council and Cheshire Voluntary Action
Cheshire East Council
Warrington Council and Warrington Voluntary Action
If you are anywhere else in the UK, you can sign up to be an NHS volunteer or a British Red Cross Community Reserve volunteer.
NHS Vaccine Team Volunteering
The NHS is working with St Johns Ambulance and Royal Voluntary Service, which also runs the NHS Volunteer Responders, to coordinate the recruitment of volunteers to support the safe and efficient running of the vaccination programme.
Find out more information below:
St Johns Ambulance are using their existing networks to recruit volunteers to help with vaccinations. They have currently paused their expression of interest process due to high demand but be sure to check back to see if they are recruiting volunteers again..
Royal Voluntary Service are recruiting volunteers as part of their NHS Volunteer Responders scheme to help with stewarding at vaccination centres.
Looking after yourself and others
It's fantastic to see the response to volunteering nationally but volunteers should also remember to take care and protect themselves during this time. Please remember to follow NHS guidelines for protecting yourselves and others.
- Before volunteering, wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. Take sanitiser gel with you if you can and to use when you don’t have access to soap and water during your volunteering
- Always wash your hands as soon as you you get home from volunteering
- Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or your sleeve (not your hands) if you cough or sneeze
- Put used tissues in the nearest bin immediately and wash your hands afterwards
- Try to avoid close contact with people who are unwell- remember to keep to recommended social distancing guidelines as much as possible
- Do not touch your eyes, nose or mouth if your hands are not clean
- When helping neighbours please only offer to help for the tasks you feel comfortable doing and are able to do.
Any volunteers who are helping local neighbours/ people in their community need to make sure that if they become unwell themselves they MUST not volunteer. Volunteers need to protect themselves and not put other people at risk.
The Government have provided information on safeguarding to address concerns people may have around supporting others in their community, please read them here.
Share your story
We are keen to share positive news stories so if you are volunteering, whether from home or as part of a community response, please email us a photo and a short paragraph if you would like to share your story. Please ensure that you have permission for any photos you send in to be used on social media.
Thank you for giving your time as a volunteer, however you do this, whether virtually or in the community as it all helps and will make a huge difference in the response to this current crisis.
Make sure you keep safe and look after yourselves.
Your UoC Volunteering Team