STRATFORD Time Bank has received £3,500 in lottery cash to help its work during the lockdown.
The volunteering organisation arranges good neighbour help for people, linking up those who need help with those who can provide it.
It also organises a befriending scheme to reduce social isolation and helps local community groups find and motivate volunteers.
“Much of our normal service depends on face-to-face contacts,” said Sarah Coxall, who runs the Time Bank.
“With lockdown, we’ve had to find new ways to do things.” Among the changes Sarah has made have been setting up online social meetings and quizzes, as well as hosting a weekly online mindfulness session, run by a local Time Bank member.
“Traditional exchanges of help have been much reduced because of the lockdown, but some things have been possible online. For example, one of our members helped a student revise for a maths exam, going through revision questions with them online.”
The National Lottery Community Fund grant will help Stratford Time Bank continue to offer its service to anyone living or working in Stratford district.
Sarah is also thinking about how the Time Bank might be able to help local communities as lockdown eases.
“The coronavirus crisis has brought out the best in many people, who have gone out of their way to help friends and neighbours. Surveys suggest that some will want to continue this type of work when the crisis is over, and the Time Bank will be ready to make this happen.
“We are grateful to the National Lottery for helping us through the current situation.”
Sarah can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling 07419 373680.