You can support those people in your local area who are less fortunate than you in many ways. Lending support can be as good for you as it is for the people you’re helping, and can help you to make new friends, learn new skills and importantly, give something back.
Help your neighbours
● Checking on your neighbours – small gestures, such as regularly checking that your neighbour is okay or has someone to talk to can be a lifeline for those living alone – especially the elderly or those with health or mobility issues. A cheery face could help to brighten their day. Perhaps you might offer to help set up online shopping for a neighbour who finds using a computer difficult.
● Spread some cheer – there are other ways to help your neighbours in times of loneliness, The Great Get Together campaign, which helps those experiencing loneliness with a series of organised virtual events around building connection.
Support local businesses
● Shop locally – where possible, buy birthday gifts or cards from local businesses in your high street or online. Spread the word – tell your family and friends about your favourite local businesses. Follow and support smaller businesses on social media- it’s a great way to get them more recognition.
● Small gestures like litter picking and gardening can help to make your local area a nicer and more positive place to live. By getting the whole family to help, you can teach children about not dropping litter and about recycling. There is nothing to stop you from organising your own litter picking clean-ups using real life contacts, or organising a litter-picking day via social media. Keep Britain Tidy has lots of ideas of how you can help in your local area, as well as how you can volunteer for this year’s Great British Spring Clean.
● Donate to local charity shops – we all have things we don’t use at home or that we no longer need. Helping the community doesn’t have to mean donating time or money – charities can really benefit from the dozens of unwanted goods we often throw away. Collect clothes and shoes, books, games and puzzles the children no longer play with and take them along to your local charity shop.
Become a volunteer
● Help your local food bank – contact your local food bank to offer support. If you are able to contribute some food to those less fortunate, it is helpful to donate food items which have a long shelf life for their teams to distribute. A little support can really boost the work they do to provide food items for families in need. You could even offer to help in person by delivering food parcels. The Trussell Trust and Neighbourly websites have information on some of the ways you can get involved.
● Volunteer opportunities – find local organisations that need help by contacting your local COVID-19 Response Hub. You can find details on your local government website.
● The NHS is coordinating a number of volunteer opportunities to help the elderly and the most vulnerable people across local communities. Find out more and join the 400,000 volunteers who already have.
Compass Fostering supports our foster carers every step of the way. We provide training, resources and a supportive community to help you become a confident carer – get in touch to find out more.