A dedicated telephone hotline has been launched in Bristol to help the city’s most vulnerable citizens during the coronavirus pandemic.
The We Are Bristol support phone number – 0800 694 0184 – went live today (Tuesday 31 March) and will offer a potential lifeline to isolated and worried residents across the city.
Call handlers will be available initially during office hours (8.30am-5pm, Monday to Friday) to provide support for people with a wide range of needs, including obtaining food supplies, other essential items and medication. They can also help arrange follow-up support with different organisations.
Marvin Rees, Mayor of Bristol, said:
“The hotline is in place to ensure we have a non-digital way for our most vulnerable residents and those at risk to access the help they may need, wherever we can. The coronavirus pandemic means many of us are worried, anxious and need help. Here in Bristol we have volunteers who are waiting to help you – when you most need it. We hope to move the hotline to a seven day operation soon.
“Anyone concerned about feeling isolated, getting food, essential items or medicine they need could benefit from the phone line. Even if you simply need someone to walk your dog or a person to talk to once a week. After all, a problem shared is a problem halved.
“Call the We Are Bristol support hotline on 0800 694 0184. Together we are stronger. Together We Are Bristol.”
The line will be manned by up to 30 staff who are all trained to handle calls and refer those with specific needs to the right areas.
There will also be a call back option to limit waiting time during busy periods and ensure everyone who needs help can access it.