On March 13th 2020, village resident Heidi Conroy posted on the Our Place Wye Facebook group that ‘we should set up a support system in the village’ in response to the Coronavirus pandemic. Facebook group members responded enthusiastically suggesting all manner of different methods of communication – a new Facebook page and WhatsApp groups based on streets being two of the most popular.
After discussion, members of the Our Place Management team decided that it was important for Our Place Wye to lead on this and to establish a system that we would be happy with. We decided to divide the village into these groups – the approximate number of houses in each area are shown in brackets:
Group A: Abbots Walk, Ramsfield, Churchfield Way, the Forstal and Gregory Court (108)
Group B: Little Chequers, Longs Acre, Martin House, Luckley House (160)
Group C: Upper Bridge Street, Bridge Street, Dennes Mill, Kemps Place, St Ambrose Green, Stonegate (160)
Group D: Chequers Park, the Close, Oxenturn Rd, Orchard Drive (160)
Group E: Bramble Lane, Harville Rd, Havillands (109)
Group F: Village Centre, Church Street, High Street, the Green, Cherry Garden Lane, Jarman’s Field (155)
Group G: Scotton Street, Olantigh Rd, Silks Lane, Withersdane, Amage Road (90)
Group H: Naccolt and Hinxhill (50)
Through Facebook we asked people to volunteer to support people within their areas – to do shopping and to pick up prescriptions and to carry out any particular task that might arise as a result of the crisis. As a result of the appeal on Facebook, over 50 people have come forward. The system is up and running and we are confident that it works well.
Having set up the groups, the Our Place Management team decided to extend the Wye Community Companions befriending service which has become phone-only. A leaflet advertising the service is being distributed to four sections of the village where we perceive the need might be greatest (Little Chequers, Stonegate, Jarman’s Field and Orchard Drive). We have also sent out emails asking for people to volunteer for this service as befrienders.
The Our Place Management Team has been working on policies and guidance to support the volunteers – both for befriending and for shopping/prescription pick-up. These are available below:
200327: Corona Support Postcard Example
200326: Coronavirus Volunteer General Advice
2020: Our Place Adults Safeguarding Policy
200326: Corona Community Befriending Guidance
200326: Corona Community Befriending Terms & Conditions
200326: Corona Community Befriending Supervision
200325: Corona Community Befriending Flyer
This is obviously an ongoing situation and we will insert relevant documents above.
We would also take this opportunity to ask you if you can think of community activities which we could organise to keep people occupied over the next few months. We can apply for funding for well-worked out and properly inclusive projects – and are more than prepared to listen to sketchy ideas! Please contact email@example.com