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An army of volunteers is on standby to help Arran cope with the coronavirus pandemic.
They have signed up to be part of the Arran Resilience Group response to virus aimed to get help to those who most need it. Other businesses and groups around the island are also drawing up plans to help feed and support anyone affected.
A request for volunteers by the Arran Community and Voluntary Service last weekend was met with an overwhelming response as the island showed again that the community is ready to rally in a crisis.
Chief executive officer Vicki Yuill said: ‘We are trying to be the central point for the coordination of volunteers as part of the contingency planning of the Arran Resilience Group which has been set up.
‘It is not our usual volunteers, who tend to be of a certain age, coming forward but different people than we would normally attract. They are offering to drive, lend vans, do shopping, make telephone calls to people in self-isolation who may be lonely, offer administrative support.
‘We have told the people who have contacted us that their support will be needed in the next few weeks rather than the next few days.’
However, she said it was important that volunteers were aware of the risk to project themselves and were and that they would be given appropriate guidance to safeguard themselves.
However, anyone with is over 70 or with underlying health issues will not be allowed to volunteer.
The AVCS has also been in talks with the Co-op and is contacting small businesses and community groups around the island to help coordinate the resilience approach. Anyone wishing to help should contact the ACVS office on 600611.
A spokesperson for North Ayrshire Council said: ‘There are a number of community groups currently being set up in communities. We are gathering information on these so that they can be integrated into an overall community support network and key hubs will be established in communities.
‘Updated information will be added to the CPP website: http://www.northayrshire.community/ and the Facebook pages of the Locality Partnerships.’
‘Our early actions include establishing locality leads and contacts with local resilience partners which include community associations, community councils and community responders. We have also identified a community information lead who will circulate information to the key community hubs in each of our six localities.’