Our volunteers go the extra mile to support the vulnerable during the coronavirus pandemic 

It is not just the charity that is adapting its services to meet the challenging needs thrown up by the COVID-19 pandemic. Our amazing volunteers are with us every step of the way. 

Virtually all our Move Mates are now calling the person they used to walk with on a regular basis and many of them have taken on more people to contact, providing regular welfare calls to ensure we can help get people the support they need.

Some volunteers are also providing a medication delivery service, picking up prescriptions from a pharmacist and delivering to a self isolating or vulnerable person, whilst others are helping us with the administrative and logistical tasks needed to keep the ever-growing situation moving. 

We are constantly hearing amazing stories, or lovely little snippets, from our volunteers about how they are making a difference to the people they are supporting. 

Here are some we wanted to share:  

Going beyond a welfare call, helping with grief

When Nikki made a welfare call she found out the lady Mrs W was very distressed because it was her late husband's birthday  the following week and she would be unable to lay flowers on his grave. Nikki quickly took it in hand to arrange for the volunteer who was taking Anna some groceries the following week to her, to also buy flowers, take them to the church yard and lay them on a grave. The volunteer will take a photograph of the flowers for Nikki to send back to the beneficiary. Mrs W was very touched.

A letter passing on some York sunshine

Move Mate Helen has been walking with Alison for over a year. Alison’s son thanked Helen after the very first walk she did telling her how much his Mum had enjoyed it, so she knew the walks were doing her some good. On the walks Alison regularly shared lots of memories about her family and about York. She was always interested in what is happening in the city centre as she unable to go herself.  

Helen was sad when they had to stop walking and felt particularly upset because she wouldn’t be able to call due to Alison being hard of hearing.  Then Helen had an idea! She bought some pretty note cards and started writing to Alison, describing her own walks; daffodils along the bar walls, rainbow pictures up in windows. She delivers the notes directly to Alison’s house. Helen hopes to brighten Alison’s day with her regular messages.

Pete’s story 

“I have been calling 4 different men and women who were in danger of suffering from social isolation in the coming weeks. I genuinely look forward to my regular phone calls when we discuss all sorts of topics as well as establishing if there is anything else they need. Mostly they want a chat and have some reassurance, and in fact sometimes I can’t get a word in edgeways! It’s good to talk.”

Sorting out medication

“During our call Penny mentioned that she and her partner needs medication picking up from the chemist by Monday/Tuesday. I was happy I could arrange this directly for her.”

All things pass

When Bec called her 91 year old beneficiary Dorothy, Bec liked hearing how grateful she felt for what she had and how the phone call brightened her day. She was also mindful of the wise words they ended their call with when Dorothy said “Remember Bec, all things pass.”