Feeding Bristol is leading the strategic city-wide crisis food solution for the economically vulnerable throughout the COVID-19 outbreak. Working with Bristol City Council and FareShare South West, they are monitoring the weekly levels of food supply for organisations that are providing support directly to individuals and families in need, whilst also coordinating the central review of increasing demand and how the city responds in the short-, medium- and long-term. If you are providing food to the economically vulnerable, please ensure you are in contact with Feeding Bristol by email.
Voscur are helping to coordinate food support service and food bank referral across the city, and have asked any organisation offering this kind of support to their community to register details of their work here. This will be used for a register of citywide services.
The Charity Commission have published a detailed guide for the non-profit sector on how to respond to the COVID-19 outbreak, which can be found here. This includes information on how and when to access financial support, establishing how your organisation can help during the outbreak, moving operations online, keeping people safe and more.
Voscur have also collated some guidance on how community groups, social enterprises and VCSE organisations should respond to COVID-19, drawing on government, World Health Organisation and ACAS advice. This can be found here. Voscur’s resources are being updated regularly, and their most up to date advice can be found here.
If your organisation is a social enterprise or startup, you may find the free support offered by Outset in partnership with Bristol City Council to be of use.
Directing vulnerable people to food provisioning referrals
If members of the public or existing project service users get in contact with you to ask for help with emergency access to food during this time, please direct them to Bristol’s main referral hotline for all emergency food provisioning via We Are Bristol: 0800 694 0184
The National Food Service is also accepting self-referrals from anyone in need of food packages and hot meals (no evidence needed). Their hotline is: 0117 325 0450
Bristol Ageing Better have set up a specific helpline for older vulnerable people to access support, including food parcels and pre-prepared meals. The number for their support hub is: 0117 929 7537
Caring in Bristol have produced a very helpful handbook with practical information for people in crisis during the pandemic, alongside advice for community action groups in signposting people to the best services. It can be downloaded here.
Please direct people in need of food bank support to the Trussell Trust resources, where they can also find details of their local food bank to apply for vouchers. If their local food banks are too busy or they need help immediately, please refer them to one of the above hotlines.
Directing volunteer interest
If your project or organisation is getting enquiries from the public about how they can support communities during the coronavirus outbreak, please direct them to Can Do Bristol, Bristol City Council’s overarching volunteer hub. Can Do Bristol are organising community action across the city and will help to match people and projects together.
Acorn The Union are coordinating community action across the city to support food provisioning for those in isolation, those who are high-risk and those experiencing economic hardship.
Asking for volunteers for your project
If you are in need of support, please refer to our Community Switchboard to see how other organisations may be able to help.
If you are in need of regular volunteers, please register your project with Can Do Bristol here