Volunteers praised for stepping up to help communities in Yorkshire

Lucy Currie is one of many people in the region who stepped up to help during the pandemicLucy Currie is one of many people in the region who stepped up to help during the pandemic
Lucy Currie is one of many people in the region who stepped up to help during the pandemic
Volunteer Lucy Currie is one of thousands of people in the region praised by the Royal Voluntary Service for stepping up to help in her community during the coronavirus crisis.

Ms Currie, normally a fitness instructor, has been volunteering with Hambleton Community Action during the pandemic.

She is one of many people in Yorkshire who found themselves with lots of free time when the lockdown began, and felt she could offer help to those who were who unable to leave home.

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Ms Currie, who lives in Northallerton, said: “I started volunteering because my business is closed.

“I thought rather than sitting at home doing nothing, what else can I do?”

She has mostly been grocery shopping, telephone befriending, collecting and dropping off prescriptions, and even dog walking.

“It’s brilliant,” she said. “I think when you get situations like this, you can see the very best of people.

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“Most people have at least one decent neighbour who’s been checking up on them, one lady I do the telephoning befriending with she lives out in Swainby, but she has got a brilliant neighbour helping with shopping.

“I normally speak to her for about an hour a week.

“She always says she’s got such lovely neighbours and that people just look out for each other.”

Rebecca Kennelly, director of volunteering for Royal Voluntary Service told The Yorkshire Post: “It’s been incredible to see how people across Britain have stepped forward to help their communities in these difficult times.

“We have certainly seen a sharp rise in volunteer inquiries to support our existing work and were overwhelmed by the huge number of people who signed up to be NHS Volunteer Responders at the start of the pandemic.

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“There are more than 40,000 NHS Volunteer Responders in Yorkshire who have put themselves on duty via the GoodSam app to support with roles from picking up shopping and prescriptions, giving lifts to medical appointments to making ‘check in and chat’ calls to people isolating and delivering hospital equipment.

“Covid-19 has certainly revealed a desire amongst the public to volunteer and we hope that once the crisis has eased many will continue to give their time.”

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