A DEDICATED helpline set up for South Ayrshire residents who are shielding to avoid coronavirus has taken over 10,000 calls since April.

The council’s COVID Helpline has seen 90 of their employees volunteer to help those who have been left isolated.

The team have offered support to help vulnerable people who may have an underlying health condition, or are aged over 70, with a further 3,491 incoming calls from other residents who are looking for help.

Council chiefs have praised the team for going ‘above and beyond’ for those in need.

Councillor Douglas Campbell, Leader of the Council said:“I’d like to thank all employees who have been involved in or volunteered to manage the helpline. They really have gone the extra mile to help our local communities during this pandemic.

“We know that this is a particularly anxious time for people who have complex needs and health conditions or who have been advised to shield. The team has gone above and beyond to make sure we have contacted every South Ayrshire resident who is on the shielding list, from phoning and writing to them, to safely calling at their homes to make sure they have the support they need.”

The team have been offering support, including providing residents with access to food and essential medication deliveries.

The employee volunteers have been amazed at the positive response.

Lorna, a volunteer call handler, said: “People really do appreciate the help and support.”

Jane Bradley, Assistant Director People said: “Our staff are incredibly hard working and very proud of the jobs that they do. However, the response of staff during this pandemic has been nothing short of amazing.

“Their commitment to supporting people in need and their dedication to ensuring that people know that we are there to help them is fundamental to the success of this service. They are making a difference every day to the people of South Ayrshire.”

South Ayrshire residents who need support can call 01292 616101.


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