The Ross-on-Wye Community Development Trust was set up in 2019 with the aim of creating the Ross Good Neighbours’ scheme. The key objective was to create a network of local ‘Neighbourhood Buddies’, to assist the lonely and vulnerable people in the community with daily chores and also connect them with the many valuable services of local voluntary organisations – ensuring they could access the help they needed to stay healthy. The trust achieved charitable status in October 2019 and shortly afterwards, the coronavirus pandemic took hold and the original aims and objectives were quickly realigned to deal with the crisis.
In March 2020, the charity set up a temporary venue in Ross-on-Wye town centre where a shopping and delivery team was established to ensure the vulnerable would be able to receive the essential food provisions whilst self-isolating. In addition, a large team of volunteers also provided a dedicated message line and other services such as pet care, medication deliveries and ‘phone friends’ which offered a regular friendly voice on the end of the phone.
During lockdown the Ross Good Neighbours volunteer teams:
With lockdown easing in August, Ross Good Neighbours finally launched its Neighbourhood Buddies scheme and to date there are eleven areas within Ross-on-Wye which are serviced by a network of dedicated Neighbourhood Buddy teams. We continue to recruit volunteers or ‘Buddies’ and we encourage anyone who has a few hours’ spare each month to get in touch with us on 01989 313002 or email firstname.lastname@example.org to find out more.