Thanks for visiting our page and joining other caring people in Medway who are interested in helping their communities as the Coronavirus (COVID-19) peaks over the coming weeks – your support could be invaluable in filling possible gaps in local care for the most vulnerable and socially isolated people in Medway.
Medway Volunteer Network serves individuals and organisations to successfully engage with volunteering – and we are supporting the co-ordination and mobilisation of community support in Medway during the Coronavirus pandemic.
Please read the information below, and if you wish to register to help the community at this time please do so here.
An important reminder:
To ensure public safety, all volunteering activities should adhere to the Government's latest guidance. If you're healthy and are at low risk (If you’re unsure of this visit: www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/), you can find below a range of ways to get involved to help your local communities.
Whilst it is wonderful that a huge number of people concerned about the impact of COVID-19 and want to help, we must also be sure that we are collectively protecting the most vulnerable in our communities - so whether you are an established organisation or a recently created mutual-aid community group, please look at the support and advice pages on this site.
COVID-19 Mutual-Aid Community Groups:
A number of COVID-19 Mutual-Aid Support Groups have cropped up in Medway - search Facebook to find one close to you.
If you would like to start a Mutual Aid Group, we have created the following page that may help you: www.mva.org.uk/covid-19-mutual-aid-groups.
If you are aware of a locally created mutual-aid community group and would like to list on this page please contact us - here's what you've told us about so far:
Vulnerable Medway Unite - a group for people in the higher risk groups to chat, share tips, post positive news and important news (only verified by the NHS) and also some fun stuff to do during the long months ahead. Link for this group: www.facebook.com/groups/198348
The 'Nextdoor - Neighbourhood' App is currently trending as a useful, free and private social network for your neighbourhood - it is untested by MVA but click here to find out more about the App and to consider if it is suitable for your community.
If you are part of an emerging community & mutual-aid group in Medway then we would encourage you to take a look at the guidance and resources within the Support Section below. In particular, you might also find a 'checklist' of areas to consider useful - click here to view the checklist(link kindly shared by Voluntary Support North Surrey)
Volunteering for our NHS
The NHS is “rallying the troops” for the war on coronavirus, with volunteers being called up to help vulnerable people stay safe and well at home. You can find more and register to help them by visiting their announcement page.
Support and Advice & for Organisations and Mutual-Aid Community Groups in Medway
NatWest, Royal Bank of Scotland and Ulster Bank have today announced the introduction of a new ‘companion card’ – a supplement to their existing current accounts that will enable vulnerable customers and those in extended isolation to give trusted volunteers a way to pay for their essential goods: https://www.rbs.com/rbs/news/2020/04/natwest--royal-bank-of-scotland-and-ulster-bank-launch-card-for-.html
Central government have issued helpful guidance for volunteering during COVID-19:
A Safeguarding Factsheet: Community volunteers during COVID-19 outbreak - view by clicking here
Information on temporary changes to ID checking guidelines are being made as a result of COVID-19 outbreak - view by clicking here
Other guidance you might find useful on best volunteering practices:
Free Safeguarding Training from MVA (for more in depth information) - click here to get started
Free Boundaries / Confidentiality guidance from MVA (for more in depth information) - to follow shortly
Some good tips to'Be a good Neighbour' from Support Staffordshire - click here to view
MVA have secured a collection of short animations to support volunteering during the COVID-19 emergency:
Guidance for new volunteers
If you are thinking about volunteering for the first time, you can find a wealth of information and guidance, including what support to expect from the organisation you volunteer with, on our Medway Volunteer Network pages - click here to view.
Guidance for Voluntary and Community Groups recruiting Volunteers for the first time
If you are a Medway VCS group, club or organisation and would like information and guidance on supporting volunteers safely, then you will find a wealth of information on our Medway Volunteer Network Organisation support pages - click here to view them. You can also contact us by email: firstname.lastname@example.org if you need to talk to us about your volunteering needs