| People across Essex are doing an amazing job supporting their family, friends and neighbours who at the most risk from coronavirus because they are older, vulnerable and have health conditions. |
From now, public services across
Essex are stepping up support for people who may not have help from their
nearest and dearest.
Cllr David Finch, Leader of
Essex County Council, said:
“The way Essex has rallied around
the vulnerable across the County has been incredible and I would like to thank
each and every person who is helping friends, neighbours and relatives stay
home and stay safe. You are literally saving lives across our great County
because you are protecting our NHS.
“Now Councils, the NHS and all our
public and voluntary sector partners are stepping up to try and make sure
no-one who needs help is missed out. It has been a huge effort, involving
round-the-clock work. I am very proud of what is being put into place to shield
our most vulnerable residents.”
Essex County Council is supporting
the national effort to get food and supplies to the County’s most vulnerable
How will it work
The Essex Resilience Forum (ERF)
made up of all the county public sector organisations, is tasked with ensuring
that people with the most serious health conditions across Essex, Southend and
Thurrock, are shielded from social contact for 12 weeks during the peak of the
epidemic. These people have been written to directly by the Government and told
to expect food packages to be delivered to them.
A distribution hub has been set up
by Essex County Council in Witham in central Essex, with two other hubs set up
by Southend and Thurrock Councils. From this weekend, food packages will begin
to be dispatched to vulnerable residents.
Given the importance of social
distancing and the most at risk being able to stay in their homes, ERF members
and the voluntary sector are also mobilising resources across the county to
provide assistance to a larger group. These are residents who are also
vulnerable during the peak of the epidemic, and includes people over the age of
70 or pregnant women, who do not have the support of friends, family or
Councils across the county are
working with supermarkets, delivery companies and other organisations on
developing supply lines to people.
District Councils will also use
their local hubs, which have been established in every district, borough and
city council area, using volunteer support.
How will they be contacted
These residents will be contacted
by the NHS, or their GP surgeries, starting from early next week, week
commencing Monday 30 March.
The message will set out the
instructions for those people who do not have the support of friends, families
and neighbours, to register with the Essex Welfare Service (EWS) (part of
PROVIDE, a health and social care provider), should they need food deliveries.
They will be able to contact the
EWS via essexwelfareservice.org and
by calling 0300 303 9988, Monday to Friday between 8am to 7pm, and Saturday to
Sunday between 10am to 2pm.
We recognise not all of residents
identified will need support, and many will have organised their own
arrangements already. However, Community Shield’s aim is to ensure that no-one
slips through the net. If you need support and have not received a message,
please contact the EWS directly.
Updates will be posted on the Essex County Council website and
via social media.
Please sign up to volunteer in your local
The latest advice on coronavirus (COVID-19) is available on the Public Health England (PHE)
and NHS websites.