Residents are being urged to make use of a wide network of help and support on offer by Monmouthshire County Council and its partners. The support comes as Wales enters a fifth week of lockdown measures, with millions of people across the UK staying at home. The Community and Partnership Development team are reminding residents they are on hand to help anyone who may be experiencing issues from accessing food and essential items to those who may be seeking support for their mental and physical health.

The Community and Partnership Development team, along with key partners, have already played a pivotal role in the COVID-19 response. During the first national lockdown in March 2020, they helped bring together an army of volunteers to support Monmouthshire’s most vulnerable residents and people needing to shield. In recent weeks, with the severity of the pandemic increasing and the heightened risks of a new strain of the virus, the need to help people who may be vulnerable or those without a support network is paramount.

It is hoped residents experiencing any sort of issue will contact the team in order for a suitable mechanism of support to be identified to suit their needs. Collaborative working with key partners including GAVO, Mind Monmouthshire and Monmouthshire’s housing service means they are able to offer support such as access to food and prescriptions, telephone befrienders, pen pals, a supported online shopping service, help with using digital devices to connect with family or others, wellbeing opportunities and support with mental health.  The team will work with individuals to explore the best options and have already helped over 1,200 residents since the start of 2020. 

Cabinet Member for Community Development and Social Justice, Councillor Sara Jones said: “Our communities have remained resilient through these difficult times but we know there are many people facing challenging circumstances. With the significant impact on our economy and many people facing job losses, we want to remind people that they do not need to struggle in silence. Our colleagues are ready and waiting to help people whether it be accessing foodbanks, support with mental health or even if someone is unable to pick up prescriptions while we are in lockdown.

“Collaborative working with this wide network of organisations allows us to ensure a person has the correct help and expertise required to support their needs. I would like to thank our partners and our Community and Partnerships team for continuing to go above and beyond in what’s been the most challenging period in a generation.”

Anyone wishing to access help and support is asked to contact: partnerships@monmouthshire.gov.uk or call 01633 644 696