Guidance for Suffolk’s Community Groups

Launched in light of COVID-19.
Groups of volunteers who have swung into action in the wake of Covid-19, are now able to access two newly created guides to help support their emergency response.
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Guidance for Suffolk’s Community Groups

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Community Action Suffolk has created the guidance to ensure any newly formed neighbourhood initiative will be resilient throughout this unprecedented period.

Developed by CAS’s team of community and voluntary action specialists, the guides cover such issues as safeguarding, volunteer recruitment and management, DBS checks, insurance, publicity and constitutional structure.

The new material is of use both to community schemes and networks who have ‘repurposed’ to develop a new offering in response to Coronavirus, and equally for those who have created ‘pop up’ or ‘first time’ community projects to help in their local area.

In recent days, Community Action Suffolk has been working alongside Suffolk Community Foundation and Suffolk Association of Local Councils to ensure new and reconfigured organisations in the VCSE sector have all they need to remain robust through the coming months.

Sally Connick, Head of Community and Voluntary Action for Community Action Suffolk, said: “We have been enormously impressed by how groups of neighbours and willing volunteers have responded to the threat of the virus in the Suffolk community.

“Our focus now, is on ensuring we provide such groups with the support they need to remain resilient for however long this period of vulnerability to the virus continues.

“We have a long and successful track record of supporting local groups and initiatives, thanks to the work we do with Good Neighbour Schemes. We’re now using the information we would typically share with those schemes, to provide something more bespoke at this unprecedented time.”

Baroness Ros Scott, a trustee of Community Action Suffolk, has been looking at the guidance with her community’s Covid-19 response in Creeting St Peter.

She said: “Groups can be a few people in a small village who want to look after their neighbours or hundreds of volunteers in a community of thousands.  

“Whatever it is, we want to make sure that any group in the county is being managed in a way which follows appropriate safeguarding, and has access to all the advice they need to make sure everyone is safe and supported.”

To get a copy of the guides  visit https://www.communityactionsuffolk.org.uk/covid-19-response/covid-response-communities/.  The webpage will be updated regularly with helpful resources.

Community Action Suffolk supports organisations in Suffolk’s Voluntary, Community and Social Enterprise (VCSE) sector, to enable them to operate more effectively. It provides bespoke services and products that are relevant, accessible and designed to meet the needs and expectations of individuals and community groups. It makes sure the VCSE sector has easy access to networks, information, tools and resources, so they can operate successfully.

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