As the Government brought in measures to keep the most vulnerable safe from Covid-19, Epsom & Ewell Borough Council quickly set up a community hub providing help and support to those that need it most.
The hub is supporting the most vulnerable residents who are in self-isolation often with no family or friends to help, as well as those who are identified as being extremely vulnerable on the NHS ‘shielded’ list. Support on offer includes delivering food and other essential items, collecting and delivering prescriptions, and offering a friendly link with the outside world.
Last week, the council received details of a further 500 residents on the shielded list. This means that there are over 1,500 local residents who have been told to remain indoors for 12 weeks because of the Coronavirus – all of whom are being regularly contacted by the community hub team.
As well as council staff, councillors stepped forward to be trained on contacting and engaging our vulnerable residents, providing a reassuring contact for those that need it. Councillor Hannah Dalton is one of the councillors who has volunteered and is making calls for the hub from home.
Councillor Dalton said “it’s amazing what a difference something as simple as a phone call can make. Whilst the individual conversations remain confidential, what I’m hearing from the people I am speaking to is that friends, neighbours and family are great at making sure that they have food supplies but what is missing is regular social contact. I’m urging everyone who knows someone having to self-isolate to pick up the phone, and call them for a chat because it really will make a huge difference to that person.”
Residents are warned that there has been an increase in scammers around Covid-19. If the council contact you from the community hub they will not ask for financial details.
If you are in need of assistance, please contact the Surrey-wide Community Helpline: 0300 200 1008 who will be able to direct you to the services that can help.