Reach out to vulnerable and don’t panic shop - advice from town council on coronavirus
PUBLISHED: 15:00 18 March 2020
Exmouth Town Council has issued some advice on how residents can support the more vulnerable members of the community.
Following the outbreak of coronavirus, people have been advised to go into self-isolation if they have a new cough or a high temperature.
This has prompted concern for more vulnerable members of the Exmouth community.
Exmouth Town Council has provided some advice relating to helping neighbours, the use of food banks and staying in touch.
Donate to the food bank
As the virus spreads, food banks could face additional pressures.
Where possible, consider donating canned food, pasta, rice and other non-perishable products.
These can be dropped off to the supermarkets or directly with Exmouth Community Larder.
Help ‘at risk’ neighbours
Public Health England considers the elderly and people with chronic conditions such as diabetes, heart disease and lung disease to be at higher risk from the coronavirus.
Those in a lower risk group should reach out to their higher risk neighbours and community members, and ask how they can help, be it by picking up prescriptions and groceries or offering other assistance.
Mayor Steve Gazzard said: “It can be very isolating for individuals if they’re staying away from the places they normally go, and this can, in some cases, lead to mental health issues.
”The community can help simply by offering to talk to those in isolation and providing them with the latest information.”
Plan to stay in touch from afar
As Covid-19 spreads, more people will be asked to work remotely or from home, there will be more school closures, more cancelled events, and other measures associated with social distancing.
People should start putting a plan in place now for how they will stay in touch with loved ones, friends, classmates and co-workers when not physically seeing them.
The advice currently is if possible, consider working from home to help stop the virus spreading.
A town council spokesman said: “Remember that there are a lot of ways to keep in contact.
“Use apps such as WhatsApp to stay in touch with family and friends.
“Challenge distant friends to virtual matches with online games such as chess, and share the occasional photo from your day.
“Scheduling an hour to game online with a friend or swapping recipes in your group chat are small measures, but they let people know that you’re thinking about them, even when you don’t see them.”
Stock up, then stop
The town council says that panic buying contributes to shortages and anyone who already has 30 days’ worth of prescriptions, food and household supplies at home should stop shopping.