A group of Armagh volunteers are going above and beyond to help the most vulnerable during the coronavirus pandemic – as well as those who are fighting the pandemic on the frontline.
The Armagh Covid-19 Response Committee, was formed in the city from a wide range of community, sporting, pastoral, health, business and other organisations to provide assistance to those who need it.
The group is unique, as it is not only helping those in the community considered as high risk, but is also attempting to help combat shortages in PPE (Personal Protective Equipment) within Co Armagh intensive care units.
Speaking to Armagh I, Stephen Fields said: “It has been hectic, to put it mildly, the amount of work that has been going on, with regards to materials which the group has been able to source to pass on to ICU units.
“It has been unbelievable, mask and suits, acceptable PPE gear. We have made a number of donations to the ICU through Ronan McBride, an ICU Nurse at Craigavon Area Hospital.”
Now responding to a shortage in scrubs, the committee members acting quickly once more.
Stephen said : “We had sewing clubs in various community houses, so we are sourcing materials and machines to send out to these people.
“We had patterns sent in, apparently scrubs are a simple pattern, so we are going to try making a few of them, but it does take more time than just sourcing and handing over bio-suits.”
The West Armagh Consortium are putting together a volunteer database online in order to map out each area which is covered.
Stephen said: “We are also gathering resources to organise deliveries. We know as this thing deepens there will be more and more people isolated.
“To try to target those at a higher risk, we have put requests to local groups to create lists of those in their community. Some even have notes telling us if there is family support for each individual.
“The system is brilliant, it tells us where the volunteers are located, so for the past week we have been collating that volunteer database and possible needs database, so no matter where they are we can send someone.”
If you need assistance you can get through to the response team on 077 6381 8393 or 077 5994 9314.
To sign up as a volunteer, you can click here.