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A number of community support groups have sprung up or are in the process of being organised to help during the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic.
Ballachulish residents have rallied and acted quickly to form community support and communication links.
Highland councillor Niall McLean commented: ‘We are working together in a community-led response to assist the NHS in combating COVID-19 and care for vulnerable people in the area and have a dedicated group of volunteers ready to offer help.
‘In 24 hours, we had more than 50 volunteers sign up and will communicate with the community as much as is necessary through email and the COVID-19 Ballachulish Community Support Facebook page.
‘Things volunteers can help to do will include grocery/leaflet deliveries, distributing prescriptions, making meals, communicating with those not online, dog walking or patrolling the red or green flag system in the area to check for changes.
‘We’ve already distributed information packs and window flags to every home. Households can display a green tick in their window if they do not think they need assistance and a red cross will be used by those who do, no matter how large or small the task.
‘Identifying resources we have, volunteers and those who are vulnerable has been an important first step. It’s not necessary for people to sign up. They can reach out for help as and when they need it. We have already started actions supporting the community, working behind the scenes to ensure we are ready when most needed.
‘Protecting and supporting the most vulnerable in our community using the strengths we have, whether it be in businesses, personnel, locations or willingness, will ensure Ballachulish residents will be empowered to follow the NHS guidelines for as long as possible.
‘We’re sharing our actions on how to organise a similar group with villages and towns around Ballachulish, but this can be rolled out in any city, town, village or street in Scotland.’
And Councillor MacLean added: ‘We have no doubt this will make a huge positive impact to those who are unwell or need to self-isolate and ultimately let the NHS function as best as possible through this difficult time.
‘We all need to look after each other and hope to see this kind of community model replicated across the UK.’
*Among the new groups is the Lochaber Coronavirus Community Group which can also be found on Facebook.
*If you live in Plockton, Duirinish, Drumbuie, Achnandarach or Duncraig you will soon get a list of names and numbers through your letterbox of people willing to help during the coronavirus outbreak.
A number of support groups have been set up in Lochaber to help communities tackle the impact of the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak,