Help For Community Groups

In partnership with Ashford Volunteer Centre, we are keen to support as many volunteer groups and individuals as possible in order to create strong community spirit and help one another through these difficult times. We are doing this by promoting the work of local groups on our website so that residents can find new ways they can help others.

If you would like to have the work of your community group promoted on our website then please complete our online volunteer group form. Visit our funding page to find out what Coronavirus grant funding is available.

If you would like to help others in the community then please complete our individual volunteering form to put yourself forward.

If you're looking for information on food banks, visit our food bank map.

See a list of local voluntary and community groups to find out what help and support is available in your area.

Find advice and ideas on how you can run your group and deliver your services safely and effectively during Coronavirus, and in the future.

Find out more about volunteering for the NHS in the community.

Read the government FAQs on safeguarding for community groups. The government have also provided guidance on how to safely help others.

Read KCC's information on key adult social care [pdf] 116KB

Does your neighbour need help?

If you can, please help others in your community – check on any vulnerable family, friends and neighbours to see if they need anything from the shops, a prescription collected or help with other small jobs. Sometimes just a small favour can make a big difference. Your communities are strong and resilient and there are simple things you can do to help them continue to thrive. You can help your neighbour by:

  • Making sure they have enough food and other general supplies to cover a few days;
  • Walking their dog, picking up a prescription, putting out their bins or taking in a parcel;
  • Phoning, Skyping or Facetiming so they can see a friendly face, helping to reduce their isolation;
  • Helping with childcare or other caring responsibilities;
  • Checking if any of their planned appointments have been cancelled before they travel;
  • Making sure they have some simple recipes to hand – or have done some batch cooking for the freezer;
  • Appoint someone in your community/neighbourhood as the main gatherer of information so that everyone in your area gets access to the same and most accurate information;
  • Please be mindful with your comments and actions, so as not to cause undue concern or anxiety within your community. If you hear misinformation that may cause issues, respectfully challenge if you’re able to;
  • Please be respectful of anyone you know who has been diagnosed with COVID-19 as it’s likely to be an anxious time for them. Due to patient confidentiality their details will not be publicly confirmed, so please do what you can to respect and protect their privacy, and do not speculate with the local media or on social media;
  • PHE has advised people who are self-isolating to do what they can to avoid visitors to their home and any deliveries of groceries, medications or other shopping to be left at the door so please ensure that when you are providing support this advice is followed.

Don't get scammed

Scammers and criminals are already looking for opportunities to scam people as a result of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. Happily, there are many more stories of kindness and generosity but we want to make people aware of the scams as they emerge - which they seem to be on a daily basis. Please keep yourself safe.

We have received reports from Kent Police of people door-knocking and claiming to be from the health authority.

Advice to avoid scammers
What happens What to do
A stranger knocks on your door Do not open the door, but ask what they want. If in doubt do not let them in
They claim to be from the Health Authority Do not allow them to take any money or details from you
The offer to do COVID-19 testing or taking residents' temperature Report to Kent Police on 101, if you ask them to leave and they don't contact the Police on 999
If you suspect a scam Please warn vulnerable family members, friends and neighbours

Staying safe when getting help with your shopping

Don't hand money to a stranger 

Do not hand money to someone you don't know or trust. Do not hand your credit or debit card to anyone. Never write your PIN down or give it to anyone else.

If you don't know the person who's offering to help with your shopping, make sure they're introduced by someone you know and trust.

Help with door to door shopping

If you're getting help, or helping someone with door to door shopping it's important that:

  • You wash your hands as often as possible;
  • You keep at least two meters (three steps) away from each other;
  • You get a receipt for any money (or take a photo);
  • Shopping is left on the doorstep and you wait until it's been collected.

Help with click and collect shopping

If you're getting help, or helping someone with click and collect shopping it's important that:

  • You wash your hands as often as possible;
  • You keep at least two meters (three steps) away from each other;
  • The person getting help makes the order and pays online;
  • The person getting help shares the order reference number, ideally by email;
  • Shopping is left on the doorstep and you wait until it's been collected.