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Coronavirus: Harrogate charity thanks 250 volunteer army

Coronavirus: Harrogate charity thanks 250 volunteer army

Published by The Stray FM News Team at 5:36am 1st June 2020.

At the start of Volunteers' Week, Harrogate Easier Living Project are publicly thanking those who've given up their time to help others through the pandemic.

  • The Harrogate Easier Living Project (HELP) say they were 'inundated with offers' to volunteer during the coronavirus crisis.
  • Over 250 people have given up their time to help vulnerable residents with things like shopping and picking up prescriptions.
  • To mark Volunteers' Week, the charity are thanking all those who've helped out, and say they hope many will continue to volunteer even once the pandemic is over.

Today (Monday, 1 June), is the start of Volunteers' Week and the Harrogate Easier Living Project (HELP) is taking the opportunity to issue a big public 'thank you' to the over 250 people who've given up their time to help others during the coronavirus outbreak.

The charity says they were 'inundated with offers' to volunteer with their frontline services following an appeal they put out at the beginning of the Covid-19 crisis.

The ‘Here to HELP’ volunteers have jointly assisted local people struggling with over 1,000 tasks, such as shopping and picking up prescriptions.

Ripon based volunteers have also made up and delivered food boxes to those most in need. Volunteers have also offered befriending phone calls where local residents have been missing social contact whilst having to isolate or shield family members.

Frances Elliot, CEO of Harrogate and District Community Action (HELP’s parent charity) said:

“Our community has come together during this crisis to help people in their hour of need. We have been delighted by the number of people who have offered their time to volunteer with us. All our volunteers have shown dedication and commitment in assisting local residents requiring extra support at this challenging time. We really couldn’t have achieved this without them!”

The charity has been impressed by the length some of its volunteers have gone to help others. Volunteer Lynne is currently assisting Eva. Eva is 95 years old, profoundly deaf and partially sighted.

HELP arranged for volunteer, Lynne Bagley, to call round to the house every other day. Lynne began by holding up a sign at the window stating her name and that Eva’s niece had asked her to check round to see whether she was ok.

Over the weeks, Eva has come to recognise Lynne and now says her name when she comes round. Lynne writes her side of the conversation on a white board provided by HELP. Eva then tells her if she needs anything.

Lynne said she has made “two friends for life” in both Eva and her niece and feels really rewarded that Eva has come to recognise and trust her.

There are over 250 volunteering opportunities with local voluntary and community organisations, including  those with the HELP project, on Harrogate and District Community Action’s (HADCA) online volunteering directory https://hadca.org.uk/volunteer/opportunities