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Support for vulnerable as communities recover

Vulnerable residents across Test Valley will continue to receive support and help as the borough continues to recover from the Covid-19 pandemic.

Since the start of the national lockdown, Test Valley Borough Council has worked alongside dozens of local voluntary groups set up in response to the pandemic to ensure food parcels, medication and other vital supplies were delivered to members of the community who are self-isolating. This has been in addition to the government’s weekly food parcel scheme, set up to support clinically extremely vulnerable people who are shielding and would otherwise not be able to access food.

As of July 31, the government’s food parcel scheme came to an end, but residents across the borough will still be able to access local support after this date, should they need it.

While other aspects of everyday life now begin to return to normal, access to food provisions and other services remain available. Residents who had been receiving government food parcels have been contacted prior to the end of this month and arrangements are being made for the minority who remain in need.

The Test Valley Coronavirus Helpline, run by the authority and its community partner, Unity, will also reduce its hours to five days a week, Monday to Friday, as a result of fewer calls being received over the past few weeks.

Leader of Test Valley Borough Council, councillor Phil North, said: “It’s fantastic that the number of people who need our help is now decreasing, but that is only due to the incredible work of the various community groups, our partner, Unity and of course, our staff.

“Although we are now seeing less of a need for direct help in delivering food and medicines, we want to make it clear that this support is still here, and these services remain on offer to anyone who needs it.

“The community hotline remains open, 9am until 5pm, on Monday to Friday, and the services can still be accessed should anybody need us. We are immensely grateful to the help that the community groups have provided for those who need it most and we will not stop now.”

The Test Valley Community Helpline can be reached via 0330 400 4116, Monday to Friday between 9am until 5pm.


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