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A Voluntary and Community Sector response across Bristol, North Somerset and South Gloucestershire

West of England Civil Society Partnership CIC

As part of the response to the COVID-19 outbreak across the Bristol, North Somerset and South Gloucestershire area, the Voluntary Community and Social Enterprise sector (VCSE) is working in partnership with the Local Authorities, NHS Clinical Commissioning Group and Sirona care & health in providing a response from the grass root community groups, with the local authorities and through to the area-wide Command structures.

Starting at a locality level we will be working with Wellspring Settlement, Southmead Development Trust, Knowle West Healthy Living Centre, BS3 Community, the Wellbeing Collective in North Somerset and Southern Brooks, who will provide reach into, and intelligence from their local communities in addition to utilising their Social Prescribing workers to make links into the GPs surgeries.  Links will be made at this level to support the new and emerging mutual aid groups who will provide community and street level volunteers.

Working with each local council alongside other statutory partners, the VCSE will be represented by Vocsur, VANS and CVS South Gloucestershire at three incident control centres They will draw on their expertise and information flowing from the locality partners. This local support and coordination function will allow appropriate decision making and actions to be taken which respond to each of the areas unique needs and support the health and care system to meet the needs of people leaving hospital as well as those who need support in their communities.

Strategy and oversight for this local action across the area is provided by the West of England Civil Society Partnership whose role it is to provide voice and influence for the VCSE by being part of the VCSE “cell” within the Silver Command of the local emergency organisational structure set up when the outbreak started.

All of the voluntary sector partners are committed to working with and for their local communities in this difficult time and are proud to be part of the local response. By working with other local partners in health and care, we will all ensure that the voice and expertise of the VCSE sector is represented at every level.

For further information please contact: Chris Head, Director, West of England Civil Society Partnership on 07545 576818.

Southern Brooks supported people over the Easter Bank Holiday weekend between 8am and 8pm, every day.  We provided practical support with food and prescription collections, linked people into their local mutual aid groups where possible and were a friendly voice at the end of the phone for people who wanted someone to talk with.

We distributed fresh fruit and dairy produce to people in Patchway, and the medical team at Southmead A&E were delighted to be given the left overs.  

We’re looking at our opening hours for next week, to make sure we are available when people most need us.  To refer please contact 07773 209943 or email