Helping People Shielding: Advice and Support (COVID-19)

The past year has been hard for us all, but particularly for the most vulnerable in our society who have been shielding from the beginning of the first lockdown.

Though the vaccine rollout is in full force and we can see a light at the end of the tunnel, we mustn’t get complacent. Those with health conditions should continue to shield until it has been deemed safe to stop. Equally, we must not forget that many shielders still need our help, and we should continue to be providing assistance where we can.

This article will set out advice and guidance to shielders and those who wish to help shielders.

Update: With the new UK Roadmap, we may be able re-open non-essential retail, pubs, offices and leisure centres (with restrictions) by April 12th. See full details on the Gov website.

Even with the possibility of restrictions easing, some people may still have to shield.

Advice for shielders

Don’t get complacent now — you’ve done a wonderful job. Here at Ideas in Action, we commend you for staying strong through this difficult period. And though the tide appears to be turning, you need to continue following government guidelines until the end.

Remember:

  • Work from home if you can.

If your employer is starting to invite staff back into the office, make sure you voice your right to remain at home.

  • Limit going out in public spaces, including shops.

This is especially important now as the shops start to get busier following the vaccine rollout. If you need anything delivered to you, shop online or contact a friend or family member to deliver it to your door.

  • Do not travel to see friends and family, even if they are vaccinated.

You might feel as though it is safer now to visit your loved ones, but travelling still presents many risks that should be avoided.

Advice for those who wish to help shielders

Many vulnerable people across the UK still need our help. Please volunteer to help a shielder if you can.

There are many ways to help people who are shielding from COVID-19. These include:

  • Calling them on the phone for a chat.

Many shielders have stated that the hardest part of shielding is the loneliness that comes with it. It might not seem like much, but a simple phone call can make their day. It doesn’t need to be someone you know personally; there are many volunteer schemes that will connect you with someone who wants to chat.

  • Pick up and deliver food to their door.

As the shops start to get busy again, shielders are at greater risk if they pick up their groceries themselves. Volunteer to pick up and deliver their groceries to mitigate this risk.

  • Send them treats.

Even just a sweet confectionary can make a huge difference to their day. Not only will it give them something sweet to enjoy, but it will also let them know that someone is thinking of them.

  • Buy them puzzles and other forms of entertainment to keep them occupied.

Boredom is another issue that many shielders have faced over the past year. A surprise puzzle, or similar form of entertainment, can keep them occupied while letting them know that you’re thinking of them.

Ideas in Action are committed to helping the community by supporting vulnerable people across Birmingham. We can deliver various mobility scooters, stairlifts and other mobility equipment to those who need them most.

We offer mobility equipment for a range of needs and price points and, if it is deemed safe to do so, you can visit our COVID-secure showroom to view the products for yourselves.

Get in touch with our team to find out more. We’re always available for support and advice.