At the start of the pandemic, local people and groups asked us how they could help in their communities. In response, we set up Westminster Connects to coordinate volunteers with those who need help. We are as always humbled by the amazing community spirit of Westminster’s residents. Since March, over 3,000 people have volunteered, supporting over 6,000 residents across Westminster with over 50,000 acts of kindness.
The council is maintaining its essential services which you can contact in the usual way.
If you are an individual or organisation who would like to help, please register below.
We have set up a system that connects volunteers to those who need help. If you would like to help out, please leave your details by clicking on the relevant link below.
By volunteering to help you may be asked to do any of the following tasks:
COVID-19, and the measures taken in response, continue to impact all of us. The COVID-19 Health Champions network is empowering thousands of Westminster residents to remain up to date on the latest advice about COVID-19.
The council keeps Champions informed of the latest advice and guidance so that they can help their family, friends and other community members to make sense of the latest facts about the virus. By having and sharing clear information, our volunteers can help their friends, family and community to make informed choices.
Health Champions are residents across Westminster and can be anyone in the community. You might be the person that everyone knows and trusts. You might be someone who wants to help in whatever way you can.
Sessions are held for champions online on Thursdays at 6pm, please register to receive an invitation. Once you have joined, there will be weekly drop in sessions on Wednesdays at 6pm and Fridays at 10am for a chance to share what you have been doing, give any feedback from conversations you have had, and meet other champions
You can also help by:
You can also donate to The World Health Organisation's COVID-19 Solidarity Response Fund.
If you get symptoms of coronavirus, you must self-isolate immediately and get a test. The symptoms are a high temperature, a new, continuous cough or a loss or change to your sense of smell or taste. You can get a test to check if you have coronavirus on GOV.UK.
If you want advice about how to set up a local COVID-19 group of volunteers willing to help neighbours, please visit COVID-19 Mutual Aid, run by a group of volunteers supporting local community groups organising mutual aid throughout the outbreak. They focus on providing resources and connecting people to their nearest local groups, willing volunteers and those in need.
Please send through the details of your newly formed group to us so that we can keep track of all the work going on in the communities and help to publicise your activity to those who need help.
If you are volunteering to help someone, please take the below steps to make sure you do not contribute to the spread of COVID-19. These include:
Make sure you check the advice every day for updates on Covid-19. The situation is changing quickly so visit NHS.UK for the latest advice.
Since the start of the pandemic. More than 3,000 Westminster residents have volunteered, carrying out over 50,000 acts of kindness, such as delivering food and making phone calls to check in on vulnerable people.
Karen McHugh helped package and deliver meals to people who were homeless and living in temporary accommodation. She said: “On one of my volunteering experiences, I delivered food to someone in north Westminster and I think he was just grateful to have someone knock at his door. He had been released from hospital, he was obviously someone who was quite vulnerable, and it was just nice for him to have someone to chat to.”
Margaret Tyrka was part of the shopper service, where volunteers went to supermarkets with a resident’s shopping list and then delivered shopping to their doorstep. She said: “Westminster Connects is a great way to help the community. I delivered food and shopping during lockdown, assisting vulnerable people. It’s been a nice experience to help and I would advise everyone to join us in helping each other. Residents have been really grateful for all the volunteering we have done.”
Joao Rocha is the Managing Director of Storm Flowers London. During lockdown, he used his company’s van to pick food parcels up from North Paddington Foodbank to deliver to those in need around Westminster. He said: “The reason why I volunteer is because I just want to give something back to my community and make good use of my time during lockdown and help other people, because I think that’s really important.