Responding to the Covid pandemic, Unity have worked with people to set up support groups to assist local residents across the Borough, sharing good practice information and co-ordinating a referral pathway through the Covid Helpline.
Next Door Local is one of a host of groups which have been assisted and who have actively supported individuals living in the Romsey area who perhaps had no connection to the internet or could not do things online. With 30 volunteers registered and a ‘hard core’ of 12 people who have helped including local councillors and MP Caroline Nokes, the group have taken referrals through the Unity Helpline and have assisted with the collection of prescriptions, shopping and local errands.
Initially the group delivered over 300 cards around Romsey explaining what they were offering but have received most of their leads from Unity directly. Over the last three months the groups have received more than 150 requests in the Romsey area which have been fulfilled.
Comments from some of the volunteers –
“it has been a great experience in being able to help those who couldn’t help themselves, have met some lovely people and I think you have done a fantastic job for the Romsey area, it really does give a great sense of community and restores my faith in humanity even if only on a local scale” – Richard
“It was great to be able to play a small part to help those in the local area who needed prescriptions picked up or shopping done. In a weird way I almost enjoyed the hours of queuing in the fresh air, but will admit to finding shopping for others difficult! It is much harder to find unusual items in stores you do not usually go to.” Caroline Nokes