A COVID-19 Community Response Forum (CRF) has been established in Cork City, aimed at contributing to efforts to limit the spread of the virus by ensuring a co-ordinated approach to the outbreak.
As part of the CRF’s work, a new dedicated community support helpline has been established and will run daily from today, between 9am and 5pm on 1800-222-226.
It is hoped this will help ensure that vulnerable members of the community or those living alone can access deliveries of groceries, medicine, and fuels and can avail of social care supports, if needed.
The CRF was established at the request of Housing, Planning, and Local Government Minister Eoghan Murphy and will be co- ordinated by Cork City Council.
Lord Mayor Cllr John Sheehan, said: “I am urging everyone to stay safe and follow all the stay-home, physical distancing, hand hygiene, and coughing etiquette advice from HSE Public Health.
“However, doing this can be particularly hard on our most vulnerable, some of whom are particularly isolated already and this is where the Cork City Covid-19 CRF comes in, to bring some support to those at greatest risk at these times.”
Cork City Council chief executive Ann Doherty pointed out that there are many agencies doing “super work” in delivering care to older and vulnerable people in the community and said the forum is aimed at building on this, not duplicating it.
“These groups are operating independently of each other and our role is to provide a targeted, integrated, and co-ordinated approach to the delivery of these much- needed services to our more socially isolated citizens,” she said. “We want to build on the existing good local knowledge that the voluntary groups and agencies have about those at risk in our communities.”
Those taking part in the Cork City CRF include the HSE, GAA, Church of Ireland Bishop of Cork, Cloyne and Ross Paul Colton, Catholic Bishop of Cork and Ross, Fintan Gavin, the Age Friendly Network, Alone, Migrant Forum, Civil Defence, and An Post.