Laois unites to help people during the Covid-19 emergency

Covid-19: People rally around to give vital help to others

Stan Henderson

Reporter:

Stan Henderson

Email:

news@leinsterexpress.ie

coronavirus covid-19

Abbeyleix Tidy Towns has played its part by joining with Laois County Council to use the permanent publicity signs that were erected to stop postering to promot the Covid-19 community helpline

Nearly 100 local community groups and organisations have jumped onboard Laois County Council’s Community Response Forum which is aimed at helping vulnerable people countywide during the Coronavirus outbreak.

Laois County Council (LCC) set up the Community Response Forum over two weeks ago and with the help of Laois Public Participation Network (Laois PPN) which set up an interactive map of the county online.

Within several hours dozens of groups had become involved. Now every part of Laois is included. Help is available all over the county for those who need it.

Most of the groups list doing shopping lists, collecting prescriptions, collecting fuel and several others include running general errands, chatting on the phone, counselling by phone and grass cutting, various online resources, while others offer to carry out essential maintenance for elderly and vulnerable people.

Resource worker for Laois PPN Dan Bergin said that the PPN is proud to be a part of the Community Response Forum.

“There has been a superb community response over the past couple of weeks from groups and organisations offering their supports to vulnerable people in county Laois and this number continues to grow on a daily basis. Every part of the county is covered and much help is available.

“Community groups are offering services such as collecting groceries, collecting prescriptions and running general errands among other things. The most important thing at this challenging time is to let our more vulnerable people know that supports are available countywide for everyone who needs them.” he said.

An easy to use map lists every local community group in every area along with the wide range of services that each offers to elderly and vulnerable people.

The interactive map can be accessed by searching www.laoisppn.ie or www.laoiscoco.ie .

Once searched simply click on the interactive map which automatically appears then select the area of choice. A list of all local groups springs to life. Once clicked on each they show contact names, direct telephone numbers and the wide variety of services that are available from each group.

Included in the Covid-19 Laois Community Response Forum is Laois County Council, HSE, Gardaí, An Post, GAA, IFA, Laois Partnership, Tusla, Laois PPN, Laois Migrants, Local Link, Rural Link, Mountmellick Development Association, Citizens Information, Civil Defence and many other community, voluntary and sports groups and various organisations.

A confidential and free helpline service which is managed by LCC is available seven days per week from 8am -8pm by free-phoning 1800 832010 or by emailing covidsupport@laoiscoco.ie.

For those who need assistance but may not have internet access or knowledge on how to use it by phoning the helpline above they can be put in touch with local groups who can help.

If other community groups wish to get involved a form can be completed on the Laois PPN website. Further details are available by emailing ppn@laoiscoco.ie or by phoning 05786 65661.