Being a good neighbour safely
During the current coronavirus crisis it is very important that we all take care of each other. Being kind and being a good neighbour will make a real difference. There are lots of groups on social media platforms like Nextdoor and Facebook which are helping people make local connections. Whether you are being a good neighbour or someone is helping you, then you need to be confident, safe and secure.
First and foremost when you are helping you must protect your health and the health of the person that you are helping. You must always follow NHS Guidelines.
If you need help, wherever possible reach out to a known, local, trusted organisation, community group or faith organisation to see if they can help.
If you already know your neighbours then why not agree to share phone numbers now to make contact easier? WhatsApp can be a great way of a group of people staying in touch.
If you don’t know your neighbours, now may be the time to change that. Pop a note or card through their door and introduce yourself. If you can, do this with another neighbour as people may feel more confident to ask for help from more than just one individual. If you can, give contact number/s. It’s better to do this now, before they or you may need support.
Discourage people from using signs of any type on windows and doors etc. to indicate that they need help. This can draw unwanted attention to people who may be vulnerable.
If someone near you does need help, if possible try and give that support in pairs, whether that be collecting something, delivering something or walking a dog.
Regardless of social distancing if you do not know someone you should not enter their home. Similarly do not let someone into your home that you do not know.
Never post identifying or private information about someone who is vulnerable, isolated or ill on any social media platform.
If someone is offering to help you and you do not feel comfortable – trust your instincts and decline their offer of help. Never feel pressured into accepting someone’s offer of help.
Always use common sense. Never put yourself or another person at risk.
If you do not know someone avoid giving them money to go shopping for you. Is there someone you do know? Is there a local shop that you normally use – can you call them and make alternative arrangements for paying for what you need? It’s possible they may even deliver.
If you need medication speak to the pharmacy first, if you can, to see if they can deliver to you.
If you are concerned about any of your neighbours then:
- If the crisis is life threatening, call 999.
- If you are worried about someone who is ill, call NHS 24 on 111.