Mushroom’s call to UK businesses: What can you do to help?
Across the country, caring volunteers are coming to the aid of the isolated and vulnerable members of their local communities, providing them with much needed support and engagement at a time when the consequences of loneliness, a shortage of supplies or an inability to get to a local shop for groceries or medication can be severe.
Local voluntary groups, many under the Covid-19 Mutual Aid UK banner, have gathered small armies of altruistic people with the ability and willingness to help those most in need. We have witnessed first-hand the effort and passion with which people have jumped-to, helping their neighbours with grocery deliveries, medicine runs or just being on the end of the phone to cheer them up with a chat.
It has been a concentrated movement with the power to restore any faith we might have lost in humanity.
We’re doing what we can, but we need your help too.
Since mid-March, Mushroom has committed time and money to help more than 70 Mutual Aid and voluntary organisations across the country setup new phone numbers with their local area code, linked through to a grouping of phone extensions that enable local volunteers to receive multiple inbound calls at once from their communities via an app on their phones, so they can be there to provide much needed support.
Our telephony provider Gradwell has pledged their backing for the initiative by providing the new phone-lines to Mushroom at heavily discounted monthly rates. If you’re part of a voluntary group or know one in need of this support, let them know that they can register here.
Mushroom is now calling on the UK business community at large to come forward and be counted during this unprecedented time of crisis.
Whether by donating time, money or specialist knowledge and skills, we want to hear what your company can do to help.
We’re compiling a directory of businesses and their available offerings to share with voluntary groups UK-wide – to play your part, sign-up here.
What help is needed?
Every business will be able to bring its own value and creativity to this. As food for thought, here are some needs we have been informed of directly by leaders of some of the groups:
– Containers for doorstep deliveries/drop offs, such as cardboard boxes, crates or similar
– Mobile phones/SIM cards for volunteers to use to contact local residents the provision of lanyards for ID badges
– A way of liaising with local supermarkets to agree better arrangements for volunteers to shop on behalf of the elderly and vulnerable (such as access during the first hour of the day and the ability to buy more in bulk)
– Safe methods of transportation to/from hospital
– A simple method of determining which local shops are open/closed
– Antibacterial gels/equivalent to help sterilise deliveries and protect the isolated from infection