There are many ways we can get involved in supporting others at the present time. These suggestions are relevant to Balsall Heath and Sparkbrook.
Keeping everyone safe
Safety is our main priority. Balsall Heath Covid-19 Mutual Support Group are currently developing some guidelines to support all volunteers in keeping themselves and recipients of support safe. This means reducing the potential to pass on the virus, but also safeguarding. At present, we are directing all volunteers to these guidelines from the Kings Heath Volunteers Network who have kindly allowed us to share these important guidelines.
Join the Balsall Heath Covid-19 Mutual Aid group
By adding your name to the database of volunteers, the group have a clear idea of who is able to volunteer to support others at this point. By sharing your details, you are not committing to taking on a role, but members of the group may contact you to ask if you are able to get involved.
The group operate ‘CovidCall’, a phone line for anyone in need of support, advice or help. When you sign up as a volunteer, someone will contact you to find out more about what you feel able to do (no obligation!) and if you are willing, will give you details on how to join the CovidCall rota. Calls may involve:
- Arranging delivery of food/prescriptions to people’s homes
- Chatting to people who may be feeling worried or lonely
- Connecting people with other local resources and services
Sign up as a volunteer online
- The Active Wellbeing Society are compiling a database of volunteers who can get involved in a wide range of tasks. Go to their website and complete the online form: https://theaws.co.uk/support/.
- The NHS are asking people to sign up to volunteer for a wide variety of tasks, including delivering prescriptions, community transport and check in and chat volunteers: https://www.goodsamapp.org/nhs.
- Linguist Aid is a project to connect together volunteers who are literate in, or fluently speak one or more foreign languages, with mutual aid groups who need help to translate materials or interpret to or for vulnerable people.
Become a virtual buddy
- Join Ageing Better Tyburn’s Telebuddy Service. Link up with like-minded people who are self-isolating: Email: Leonie.Hammond@compass-support.org.uk
Hospital patients are still relying on lifesaving donations, and centres and hospitals are taking extra safety precautions to ensure that blood donations can continue. Find out more
Food preparation, delivery and Foodbanks
- The Active Wellbeing Society are co-ordinating efforts to provide hot meals and food parcels to those in need across the city.
- The Sultan Bahu Trust in partnership with Islamic Help are running a Foodbank for Balsall Heath and Sparkbrook from their base on Ombersley Road. They are requesting support with creating food parcels and delivery. If you can help then please e-mail email@example.com.
- Sparkhill Foodbank supports people in need in the local area. Head to their website to find out how you can support their work distributing food: https://sparkhill.foodbank.org.uk/.
- The Muath Trust, based at The Bordesley Centre needs help with food preparation and delivery of food parcels. More information here.
- Thrive Together Birmingham have asked anyone wanting to volunteer at Foodbanks in Central and East Birmingham to complete their online form here.
- Balsall Heath Covid-19 Mutual Support is a Facebook Group for people who want to organise support in Balsall Heath.
- Birmingham Community Solidarity is a Facebook Group for people who want to organise support across Birmingham.
- The Covid19 BME Sparkbrook Emergency Response Team are on Facebook sharing information as well as services and support available through Ashiana Community Project.