Weston is rallying round to help people who need help during Coronavirus. This is the latest, most up-to-date list of all the different groups and organisations offering help who’ve contacted me so far, but if you aren’t on it and would like to be, please e-mail me on John@JohnPenrose.org with the link you’d like me to add
Groups Offering Help
Weston & Worle Covid-19 Mutual Aid Facebook Group
https://www.facebook.com/groups/1231279030414567/ will organise help, share information, locate shops that have requested items in stock (e.g. baby formula), and generally keep in contact if you’re self-isolating.
North Somerset Villages Covid-19 Mutual Aid
http://www.facebook.com/groups/632857620594697/ is very similar to the group above, but with a focus on the villages. So if you live in Blagdon, Burrington, Churchill, Congresbury, Puxton, Langford, Winscombe or another local village this is the group for you.
Bournville Self-Isolating Support Group
http://facebook.com/Bournville-Self-Isolating-Support-Group-102640984703707/ for people who are self-isolating to share information and offer/ask for help.
Parklands Community Church Support Group (Locking area)
firstname.lastname@example.org for people who need help with food shopping, walking the dog or just a chat over the phone.
Weston-super-Mare Helping People
This group is looking for people around Weston-super-Mare able to help with tasks such as shopping for people in need. The signup form is here:
Hope Church Support Group (Weston and Worle area)
Blagdon Delivery Service
Blagdon Stores will take orders over the phone and deliver to people in the village who are self-isolating. Call the store on 01761 462238.
Live Weston Mercury Blog
https://www.thewestonmercury.co.uk/news/coronavirus-in-north-somerset-live-1-6563196 The Weston Mercury is running a live blog of local cases and stories.
If You Want To Offer Help
If you are worried about your neighbours, this printable form offering help is useful to post through letterboxes:
Anyone in England with coronavirus symptoms who either must go to work or is over 65 can now be tested.
Official Government/Council Advice
The official Government advice is always changing. You can keep up-to-date with it at:
The Government has released its COVID-19 recovery strategy, including the roadmap to lift restrictions step by step:
The Government has updated the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme guidance to extend eligibility for furloughing of staff. This means employers can now claim for furloughed employees that were employed and on their PAYE payroll on or before 19 March 2020.
If you run a local business, there’s useful information and contact details at:
On May 2nd, an additional fund aimed at small businesses with ongoing fixed property-related costs previously outside the scope of the business grant funds scheme was announced: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/top-up-to-local-business-grant-funds-scheme
If you are self-employed, details on the income support scheme, including eligibility, and how and when you can access the scheme can be found here: https://www.businesssupport.gov.uk/self-employment-income-support-scheme/
Here are the official guidelines on how to keep firms, charities and public services open & working safely wherever possible, to keep employees & customers safe: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/social-distancing-in-the-workplace-during-coronavirus-covid-19-sector-guidance
North Somerset Council has also put together a page with advice for local businesses:
Here’s a summary of coronavirus symptoms for any family, friends or neighbours who may be worried:
Rules on staying at home and away from others
The single most important action we can all take, in fighting coronavirus, is to stay at home in order to protect the NHS and save lives.
When we reduce our day-to-day contact with other people, we will reduce the spread of the infection. That is why the government is now (23 March 2020) introducing three new measures.
1. Requiring people to stay at home, except for very limited purposes
2. Closing non-essential shops and community spaces
3. Stopping all gatherings of more than two people in public
Every citizen must comply with these new measures. The relevant authorities, including the police, will be given the powers to enforce them – including through fines and dispersing gatherings.
These measures are effective immediately. The Government will look again at these measures in three weeks, and relax them if the evidence shows this is possible.
1. STAYING AT HOME
You should only leave the house for one of four reasons.
- Shopping for basic necessities, for example food and medicine, which must be as infrequent as possible.
- One form of exercise a day, for example a run, walk, or cycle – alone or with members of your household.
- Any medical need, or to provide care or to help a vulnerable person.
- Travelling to and from work, but only where this absolutely cannot be done from home.
These four reasons are exceptions – even when doing these activities, you should be minimising time spentoutside of the home and ensuring you are 2 metres apart from anyone outside of your household.
These measures must be followed by everyone. Separate advice is available for individuals or householdswho are isolating, and for the most vulnerable who need to be shielded.If you work in a critical sector outlined in this guidance, or your child has been identified as vulnerable, you can continue to take your children to school. Where parents do not live in the same household, children under 18 can be moved between their parents’ homes
2. CLOSING NON-ESSENTIAL SHOPS AND PUBLIC SPACES
Last week, the Government ordered certain businesses – including pubs, cinemas and theatres – to close.The Government is now extending this requirement to a further set of businesses and other venues, including:
- all non-essential retail stores – this will include clothing and electronics stores; hair, beauty and nail salons; and outdoor and indoor markets, excluding food markets
- libraries, community centres, and youth centres.
- indoor and outdoor leisure facilities such as bowling alleys, arcades and soft play facilities.
- communal places within parks, such as playgrounds, sports courts and outdoor gyms.
- places of worship, except for funerals attended by immediate families.
- hotels, hostels, bed and breakfasts, campsites, caravan parks, and boarding houses for commercial/leisure use (excluding permanent residents and key workers).More detailed information can be found here, including a full list of those businesses and other venues that must close. Businesses and other venues not on this list may remain open.
3. STOPPING PUBLIC GATHERINGS
To make sure people are staying at home and apart from each other, the Government is also stopping allpublic gatherings of more than two people. There are only two exceptions to this rule:
- where the gathering is of a group of people who live together – this means that a parent can, for example, take their children to the shops if there is no option to leave them at home.
- where the gathering is essential for work purposes – but workers should be trying to minimise all meetings and other gatherings in the workplace.In addition, the Government is stopping social events, including weddings, baptisms and other religious ceremonies. This will exclude funerals, which can be attended by immediate family.
DELIVERING THESE NEW MEASURES
These measures will reduce our day to day contact with other people. They are a vital part of our efforts to reduce the rate of transmission of coronavirus.
Every citizen is instructed to comply with these new measures.
The Government will therefore be ensuring the police and other relevant authorities have the powers to enforce them, including through fines and dispersing gatherings where people do not comply.They will initially last for the three weeks from 23 March, at which point the Government will look at them again and relax them if the evidence shows this is possible.