Voluntary Norfolk reaches Covid Response Volunteer milestone

Almost a year to the day since we started supporting people and communities affected by Covid, Voluntary Norfolk has just signed up its 1,000th Covid Response Volunteer, with demand for volunteers higher than it has have ever been.

Clare Evans, Head of our Volunteer Services Team said  ‘We have been recruiting volunteers since the start of Covid on behalf of different organisations, but since August last year we have been actively recruiting, training and deploying our own team of Covid Response Volunteers.  Many of our volunteers support clients who are shielding or isolating by collecting and delivering prescriptions or food while other volunteers have been helping at vaccination centres.

‘This week we welcomed our 1,000th volunteer and although the circumstances that caused this level of volunteer activity is not be celebrated, it is certainly a proud moment.  We need this level of volunteers to meet the huge increase in demand for volunteer assistance caused by the recent months of lockdown and the vaccination rollout.

‘We must also acknowledge the work of our 5 volunteer co-ordinators at Voluntary Norfolk who are managing these 1,000 volunteers, making sure they are all properly trained and supported, and each and every day placing volunteers with new tasks supporting people in the community. It has been a phenomenal effort from all involved.’ Clare added.

The statistics speak for themselves:

  • Requests to help people who were isolating increased by 277% in January 2021 compared to December 2020.
  • Covid Response Volunteers provided direct one-to-one support to over 500 people in January 2021
  • In February 2021, volunteers completed over 1,200 shifts at 18 different vaccination centres across Norfolk

Voluntary Norfolk’s 1,000th Covid Response Volunteer is Lisa Tweed (pictured) from Winterton who said ‘I was inspired to volunteer after taking my mum for her vaccination at the Park Surgery in Great Yarmouth and the volunteer marshalls there were so brilliant.  My mum was nervous about the vaccination but they reassured her and put her at ease.  It was such an uplifting experience to see everyone being vaccinated, a real community effort and I wanted to support and be part of that.’ Fittingly Lisa’s first role on Thursday 1st April will be replicating the role that inspired her –  as a volunteer marshall at the vaccination clinic at the town’s Park Surgery!

We are still recruiting for volunteers to join the Covid Response Volunteer Service. Find out more about what is involved and how to register.