During this time of significant uncertainty, Aberdeenshire Voluntary Action (AVA) is working closely with the Grampian Local Resilience Partnership and its statutory organisation members. We are continuing to support community and voluntary groups to deliver the vital services that are needed to ensure that our communities remain safe, supported and informed. In addition to the information that is regularly updated by the Scottish Government, the key sources of information that we are keeping an eye on are Ready Scotland, the Scottish Council of Voluntary Organisations (SCVO), the Office of the Scottish Charity Regulator (OSCR) and Volunteer Scotland. More locally, we are also keeping a close eye on the twitter feeds of both Aberdeenshire Council and Aberdeenshire Health & Social Care Partnership.
If you are isolated or shielding and need assistance you can contact the Grampian Coronavirus Assistance Hub who will match your request with a volunteer or group that can help you. You can also contact The Hub by telephone if you'd prefer by calling 0808 196 3384 (free phone with lines open 9am to 5pm Monday to Friday).
Thank you to Aberdeenshire's volunteers
To those of you who have volunteered either through the Grampian Coronavirus Assistance Hub or your local community groups and organisations, you are more appreciated than you will ever know. Your efforts have been outstanding and the support you have given to those in need has demonstrated what being human is all about: treating others as you would wish to be treated yourself.
To those of you who have volunteered but not yet been called upon, please don't be despondent; volunteering is needed all year round by many groups and people. We hope that you would consider volunteering in 'normal' times as well as during national emergencies, so if you'd like to hear more about volunteering opportunities, please email us to register your interest (firstname.lastname@example.org). You can also visit our volunteering webpage which can be found by clicking here.
Funding for your group or organisation
There is a wealth of information available about the many different funds that exist to support community and third sector organisations during this time. We have worked hard to filter some of this information to make it easier for groups to decide which fund(s) they should apply to. For more infomration, please visit our funding page by clicking here.
Support for new community groups
In addition to securing funding, it is important that the many new groups to have formed in response to the Covid-19 crisis have access to information that will help them to manage their group in the best way they can. To help with this we have produced a series of guidance notes covering a range of topics which can be accessed by clicking here.
Testing for Coronavirus
You may have noticed that a grouping of workers specifically in the voluntary sector has recently appeared in the guidance for accessing testing for Covid-19. The wording for this is as follows: “Priority Group 4: Staff and volunteers in third or public sector organisations, and staff in nationally or locally significant industry important to economic sustainability and growth.”
If you believe that you fall within this category, you may be able to access the UK Government testing service at either Aberdeen Airport, Peterhead or Elgin by clicking here.