The community response to Covid-19 in Kirklees has been amazing. We want to thank everyone who is helping others to stay safe, to access food and essential supplies such as medication, and to stay connected. We also want to make this vital support as accessible as possible for everyone who needs it, as well as supporting our dedicated partner organisations, mutual aid groups and volunteers.
As part of our commitment to make it as easy as possible for us all to support each other, Kirklees Council have introduced a Freephone number for the Covid-19 Community Response helpline: 0800 4561114. The helpline is currently open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. The local number for the helpline, 01484 226919 will continue to be available, and we will happily call people back. Both numbers are answered by the same team. This is not a new service – the advice and support will be the same on both lines.
Anyone who cannot currently get essential help directly from friends, relatives or neighbours can contact Covid-19 Community Response via Freephone 0800 4561114 or online. Volunteers and local organisations can also contact the freephone helpline to make a request on behalf of someone who they are concerned about.
Kirklees Council’s staff and our partners, voluntary organisations, mutual aid groups and volunteers are all working together in local places across Kirklees to respond to requests for help.
Do Something Now – Covid-19 Response is a community investment opportunity to help communities respond to the challenges facing Kirklees as a result of Covid-19. Kirklees Council want to support local people, community groups, Mutual Aid Groups and community organisations to provide essential support and services to local people who have been affected.
How much can you apply for?
Individuals can apply for up to £200
Unconstituted groups can apply for up to £1,000
Constituted groups, charities and not for profit organisations can apply for up to £50,000
Funding awards will be for a maximum of 3 months support, with an option to extend if necessary.
What can be funded?
We are prioritising ideas and projects that:
help individuals, children and families get access to food and essential supplies such as medicines
provide support around mental health, emotional and social wellbeing
Keeping critical services going, and other projects and ideas, may also be considered for funding.
Help towards running costs for organisations
We will consider funding running costs for groups and organisations who are responding to Covid-19, which might include:
Recruiting and training volunteers who are helping with the Covid-19 response.
Building costs such as rent, gas and electricity for new sites used as part of the response.
Costs towards capital items may also be considered.
We want to do more to show the amazing work that everyone is doing as part of the co-ordinated Community Response in Kirklees. This includes pictures of local organisations, mutual aid groups, councillors, staff and volunteers. Please send us any photos that you are happy for us to use to help promote the Community Response to Covid-19 in Kirklees.
Share your photos
What we’re looking for:
Photos of people or activities
Landscape format photos are best
Please get consent from any people who are in the photo
Photos that you’re happy to be published on the web, including social media
Please send your photo, along with a short description (including who is in the photo) to:
Please also confirm that we have your permission to share your photo. We may use your photo on Kirklees Council web pages, on social media or in email bulletins. We may also share your photo with trusted partner organisations who are helping to promote our work.
Got a story to tell?
If you have a story about the response to Covid-19 in your local place that you would like to share, please get in contact with Diane Calverley.
Email: email@example.com or call 07966 248959.
As part of the co-ordinated Community Response to Covid-19, Kirklees Council and our partners are organising regular Zoom video conferences to support local aid groups.
Here’s what’s happening…
Weekly sessions on a Tuesday
Tuesdays at 5pm (up to 90 mins)
Regular Connection Call for Mutual Aid Groups
This session is open for all admins of mutual aid and hyperlocal groups to join. There will be open space for questions. This session will be attended by officers from Kirklees Council who will listen deeply to what is going on and continue to reply in full by email before the next call.
How to take part
You should be able to take part in our Zoom conference calls on a smart phone, tablet or computer. In order to avoid overloading these conference calls we’re asking that only leading organisers in your group dial in to our Check-ins. All groups on our contact list have received the Zoom link. You can request the link by contacting Luc.Bride@kirklees.gov.uk
We’ve developed an online mapping tool to help community organisations such as Covid-19 mutual aid groups. You will be able to use this to view local information such as the locations of foodbanks, pharmacies and support groups relevant to your local area, to help you support others.
You can use the maps to view geographic boundaries (such as wards, settlements or custom areas) and also the coverage of services and community assets such as known mutual aid groups and other features. Your group can create custom maps for your area, including numbers of properties or streets, to assist with co-ordination of local support.
If you’d like to use this mapping tool and you haven’t already received an email from Kirklees Council about this, please contact:
Hundreds of new volunteers have signed up to support others using our Community Response online form or helpline. We are screening potential volunteers and where they have a DBS check we are recording this. These volunteers will be working directly for the council, with tasks allocated by one of our volunteer co-ordinators, including:
Collecting shopping and dropping off on the doorstep (or other items)
Telephone befriending – a chat which may help reduce loneliness or isolation
Helping to link people to what other help and support there is locally
We are not asking people to go into people’s houses or do any activities that will go against current guidance from the NHS and government about How to help safely. We are asking all volunteers to follow NHS guidelines on keeping social distancing and maintaining safe practice, so they do not put themselves or others in danger.
One of our volunteer co-ordinators will talk through the process of getting an ID badge with the people who have registered with us.
Kirklees Council are also providing photo ID cards for volunteers in local organisations, including our VCS anchor organisations and mutual aid groups in local neighbourhoods. All of these groups are a vital part of the co-ordinated Community Response in Kirklees.
If you’re part of one of these groups or organisations, you can apply for Covid-19 Volunteer ID online. We’ve shared the link with groups who are already on our contact list.
Please share this quick video to help get the safeguarding message out to Covid-19 volunteers in Kirklees. Some useful messages for anyone who is volunteering in their local place are:
if you see something say something
safeguarding is everybody’s business
as volunteers you have a safeguarding role
All volunteers should have a contact in their group or the organisation they are volunteering with, who they can raise any safeguarding concerns with. If you’re volunteering with Kirklees Council, this will be your volunteer co-ordinator.
Safeguarding training resources
Here are some useful materials from Third Sector Leaders, which were also shared with some local mutual aid groups in our online safeguarding training session.
Safeguarding adults means protecting the most vulnerable from abuse and neglect. During the Covid-19 pandemic, professionals and volunteers may come into contact with individuals and families they haven’t met before. If you see something, are told something or something doesn’t feel right you need to report it. Call Kirklees Gateway to Care on 01484 414933. Don’t ignore it, report it.
There are now thousands of local mutual aid groups across the country who are connected to Covid Mutual Aid UK. The basic idea is to coordinate care efforts for people who are self isolating in your neighbourhood, especially if they are more at risk. These groups are supporting the elderly, disabled people and those who have existing health issues. They are also supporting people who are feeling isolated or anxious throughout the pandemic. Many are on facebook.
A heartfelt thank you to all the groups who have already organised themselves to help their neighbours in local places across Kirklees. Some of these are new mutual aid groups, others are community organisations and networks who are looking out for people in their local place. We are listening to what local mutual aid groups and voluntary organisations need so that we can offer more support and advice where needed.
Find your local group to help out or to ask for support. Not all local groups are part of Covid Mutual Aid UK, so we’re also gathering more contact details to share, so that we can help to promote all our local groups.