Information on how to help out neighbours in these challenging times
Bradford District is a place where people band together, we help each other in times of need, and we live in close-knit, supportive communities. During the Coronavirus outbreak many people have come forward to help and support their neighbours, friends and family. We want everyone to be safe while pulling together to help each other out. This guide offers tips and advice on how to help, safely.
Top tips to help others
Offering help in your community
Keep it local and manageable. We suggest your own street or about 20-30 houses at most. Don’t try to cover more than you realistically can sustain – this might last for months.
Stick to a patch you know well. Keep to where people will recognise you and trust your offer is genuine. Try to understand that people may be cautious about accepting help if they don’t know you well and have the right to refuse your help.
Know your limits. Create a list of the things that you feel able to help others with. Feel comfortable to say no if people ask for more help than you’re able to give.
Trust your instincts. When you are offering to help others or being offered help, remove yourself from the situation if you don’t feel safe and respect others choice to do the same.
Report concerns. People are pulling together in communities – but we are witnessing some instances of tensions. If you witness hate crime, such as racist comments or physical violence, report it to the Police or Stop Hate UK.
Please remember if you are helping others out, to take care of yourself first and always follow the latest advice on social distancing and self-isolation.
Looking after yourself whilst helping others
Self-isolation. If you would like to help others but have been instructed to self-isolate, please follow the official Government guidelines and don’t break your isolation period early.
Social distancing. When in contact with others follow social distancing advice and keep a safe distance from others (this is approximately 2 metres or 6 feet apart).
Wash your hands. Be sure to wash your hands thoroughly for at least 20 seconds before and after contact with your neighbours and follow the NHS ‘ catch it, kill it, bin it’ advice when coughing or sneezing
Avoid close contact. Don’t get into personal care or going into people’s houses – be assured that other agencies are looking into this.
Ask for help. If you are helping others, be aware of your own wellbeing and ask for help and support if you need it.
Keep in touch. Maintain contact with friends and family by phone or online, and maintain activities that you’re able to do such as reading, exercise, walking the dog and gardening.
Don’t display information. We don’t advise that people display signs in your home / windows to tell others you’re self-isolating – this could make some people more vulnerable to being exploited at this difficult time.
Report concerns. Keep an eye out for suspicious activity or visitors to your neighbours, particularly those who may be more vulnerable, and report this to the Police if you feel concerned.
Check ID. There have been some incidents of people knocking on doors and claiming to represent charities. Be sure to carefully check people’s identification if you are not expecting them to visit and don’t answer the door if you feel uncomfortable.
If your symptoms are serious, or get worse, NHS 111 has an online coronavirus service that can tell you if you need further medical help and advise you what to do.
Phone 111 direct only if you cannot go online or if you are told to do so by the online service.
Do NOT go to hospital or to your GP practice unless instructed.
Top tips to help others
Keeping safe online
Stay connected. Keep up virtual community connections using social media, email or WhatsApp groups for your local community, rather than sending individual messages. This helps to maintain everyone’s safety.
Join groups. There are lots of existing groups that you may wish to join – look out for Neighbourhood Watch and Facebook community groups.
Protect your information. Do not share your personal details such as your email address or telephone number if you are not comfortable doing so.
Check your facts. Be sure to continue to access up to date information from trusted organisations including the Council, the NHS and Public Health. Avoid reading or sharing information if you can’t be certain that it’s from a reliable source.
Avoid online scams. Don’t open emails or click on links claiming to be from organisations such as Public Health or Centres for Disease Control and Prevention. They may be scams and could download a virus to your computer.
Beware of lending money. Don’t give or loan people money if you don’t know them or if it doesn’t feel safe to do so.
Protect your information. Keep your personal information safe and don’t share any account details with people you don ’t know and trust.
Donate safely. If you would like to donate to charity to support people affected by the pandemic, check the credibility of the organisation first or donate to trusted organisations that you know. There are likely to be funds set up soon – these will be promoted by trusted organisations such as Community Action Bradford and District.
If you have concerns about your own safety or the safety and welfare of your neighbours, including children or vulnerable adults, then contact the relevant emergency service.
- Police (Emergency): 999
- Police (Non Emergency): 101
- Bradford Council contact centre: 01274 431000
- Hate Crime reporting: 08001 691 664
How can I get more involved?
You can join our growing band of brilliant volunteers who are helping and supporting everyone across the district. We will connect you to informal, practical and creative volunteering opportunities – from checking on neighbours, to delivering supplies, to running projects or supporting care services.
If you’re healthy and low risk, you can sign-up.
Call the contact centre on 01274 431000
The contact centre is open: 8am – 6pm Monday to Friday, & 10am – 4pm Saturday & Sunday
We’re also working on digital sign-up tools, and will share details of these soon at peoplecanbradford.org.uk