Chelford Together's main aims are to reduce social isolation and loneliness by supporting mainly older people in our community. We have no paid staff, but amazing volunteers and in 2015 we received "The Queens Award for Voluntary Service" (the MBE for volunteer groups).
Due to the coronavirus we anticipate many persons in the Chelford area will face financial hardship during these challenging times. These may include people who have lost their jobs, work on zero hours contracts, be on 80% of salary or self employed.
Whilst we can see the government is taking steps to alleviate this, many may be in immediate need, in addition, Universal Credit just doesn't cover living costs and had already brought many people into poverty in the UK.
We have all seen in the news the massive number of over 1 million claims now, and last Wednesday there were queues of 145,000 people waiting to log on to the website, where all claims must start. In The Sunday Times this week one of the headlines was "unemployment to double as coronavirus ravages economy".
An email we received from the CEO of Booker Wholesale said many had contacted him in distress, one saying: "It took 30 years to build the business and it has gone in two weeks"
The nearest Foodbanks to Chelford are Knutsford and Macclesfield and as social isolating becomes more important this is a time to help our community. Chelford Together has made great efforts to ensure older persons are supported, and over the past year over 20 persons were assisted in receiving Attendance Allowance, however we anticipate the impact will be on persons of working age, possibly with families, and possibly new people in the new housing developments.
Only the other day Chelford Together heard a story of a local person who had lost their job and was having to survive on £80 a week. After rent, utilities, council tax and essential bills many people on Universal Credit are left with less than £20 a week for food, cleaning materials, travel and all other costs.
We are living in unprecedented times. Remember the Food boxes the government are shortly delivering are to vulnerable medical cases (not those in financial hardships) and many existing Foodbanks are struggling with supplies and volunteers)
WE NEED YOUR HELP!
Perhaps you have time on your hands, perhaps you are off work, college or university? So long as you are not in the high risk group instructed to isolate. We are looking for a band of volunteers who could deliver leaflets and donation bags to a number of houses and then pick them up later and return them to Chelford Community Hub for sorting and distribution.
You will be volunteering on your own (or 2 people from your own family, but observing social distancing and measures including wearing supplied gloves)
If you can help please contact David 01625 861038 or text 07999851656