UCLan students and staff team up with community groups to assist vulnerable families during Coronavirus pandemic
University working to support groups delivering emergency help for families across the country
The University of Central Lancashire (UCLan) is working with local community groups and charities to help them get vital support to vulnerable families during the Coronavirus pandemic.
Partnering with the People’s Health Trust, the University is providing expert training, support and advice to community groups across England, Scotland and Wales during the pandemic, preparing them to run vital services such as :
- delivery of food parcels to families
- collection of prescriptions
- supply of toys and educational aids to help families with home childcare during the crisis
- telephone and digital befriending services for vulnerable and older people
"We are pleased to be able to do what we can to support some of the most vulnerable. The response from our students in wanting to volunteer and help has been phenomenal and I am very proud of them."
Working through the Centre for Citizen and Community, which is based at the University, UCLan is also providing expertise and support to community groups in areas such as online communication training. This involves helping the groups stay connected to local communities and to tackle issues that have arisen during the Coronavirus pandemic such as the sharp rise in domestic abuse.
UClan’s support is also assisting some of the community groups to provide appropriate guidance to families over benefits and social welfare.
In addition a number of students from UCLan’s School of Social Work, Care and Community are volunteering their services to social work and social care activity groups, with some working as NHS volunteers to help assist families in need across Lancashire. This includes for example, students talking directly with elderly and vulnerable individuals over the phone and taking forward any issues and concerns that arise.
Jez Buffin, UCLan’s Business Planning and Development Lead for the Centre for Citizenship and Community, said “This is a worrying and stressful time for everyone, but some people and communities are more deeply impacted than others. We are pleased to be able to do what we can to support some of the most vulnerable. The response from our students in wanting to volunteer and help has been phenomenal and I am very proud of them.”
First established in 2013 in partnership with the Royal Society of Arts (RSA) and in collaboration with the Personal Social Services Research Unit at the London School of Economics, the Centre for Citizenship and Community brings together UCLan academics and external expert associates passionate about tackling social injustice and enhancing the social connectedness and health of communities.