Sunderland Council has recently written to all those residents who had been shielded or identified as vulnerable throughout the Covid 19 pandemic.
If you were on the national shielded list, you would have received a letter from the government in July explaining changes to shielding guidance as well as important information about ongoing support that is available. You may be one of a number of residents who has identified themselves as vulnerable and feel unsure about how you might be supported moving forward.
Shielding is not in place at the moment.
At Sunderland City Council we appreciate that the changing information can raise some questions and concerns so we have written to residents to not only offer some reassurance that we are here to help, as we have been throughout the pandemic, but to also encourage residents to get in contact with us so we can stay in touch and share information as we continue to move forward.
We'd like to keep in touch with you. Please either call us on freephone 0800 234 6084 and let us know we can; or alternatively complete our online form, sharing your name and address, telephone number and email address. That way we can continue to write to you and telephone to ensure you have all your support needs in place, now and in the future.
All residents across the city will also shortly receive a newsletter which shares more information about what support is available, from books at home to how to stay fit and well, supporting both your physical and mental wellbeing. The newsletter will also let you know how to stay in touch with what's on locally - why not join activities in your local area!
If you are vulnerable or at risk or have been asked to self-isolate at home by NHS Test and Trace or the regional Health Protection Team and need support or help with shopping, medication or other essential supplies, please call Sunderland City Council on our freephone number: 0800 234 6084, Monday to Friday 8.30am to 5pm. We are still here to help, and volunteers will continue to offer support to those who need it, to help you feel ready to get back out into your community safely.
From day one of lockdown, we have been supporting our residents, alongside partners within the NHS and the local voluntary and community sector. Working with these partners, we set up Community Hubs, which matched residents needing support with a local volunteer to help with shopping or collecting prescriptions, as well as many other support services. You may recall receiving a leaflet from us shortly after lockdown which shared a freephone support telephone number. We received thousands of calls for support, as well as welcoming over a thousand volunteers, each willing to work within their communities to support residents who were not able to get out and about and didn't have family or friends able to offer support.
The Community Hubs also telephoned every shielded resident to make sure they had support in place, and if we were unable to get an answer on the phone, the team carried out visits to homes to make sure they were safe and well. The Community Hubs are still operating, and support will be available for a long as you need it to help you feel ready to get out and about safely in your community.