Charlton Athletic Community Trust Playing Their Part
On the 23rd March 2020, the UK like many other countries around the world went into lockdown. Now some 5 and a half months later the UK is starting to see signs of 'normality' return, however, the memories of what for many has been an exceptionally challenging period of time are not long forgotten.
We take a look at what our friends at Charlton Athletic Community Trust have been doing during that time, with a particular focus on how the sponsored minibus provided by Rivervale has helped them continue to offer community support and services throughout the COVID-19 pandemic.
"I can't express my gratitude enough for the help during this time while having to self-isolate due to my son's health issues. The service that CACT is delivering is huge."
- Resident of the Royal Borough of Greenwich
Charlton Athletic Community Trust are the charitable arm partnered with Charlton Athletic Football Club. Rivervale are proud sponsors of the Community Trust, an award-winning organisation that delivers much-needed support to the local community not just in sport and health but in education, employment, crime and a number of other worthy beneficiaries.
The Upbeats are a Down's Syndrome football team for which a primary means of transport to and from games and training sessions rely on their minibus. During lockdown CACT visited some of the Upbeats Down’s syndrome team – it was a social visit to give them a boost and see the faces of familiar staff who they have known for over 10 years! The team were scheduled to go on two away trips to tournaments during lockdown which unfortunately did not take place.
For a number of CACT members, they rely heavily on the Trust to help coordinate and deliver pick up and drop-offs for hospital appointments. During the lockdown, CACT extended this service taking local residents to hospital appointments
For most of us, we know that although food shopping is usually a boring chore, during lockdown for many it was a major concern. The team at CACT coordinated food shopping and deliveries for those in need. Then, as demand grew, moved to food boxes in partnership with another local charity. The Leader of the Council for the Royal Borough of Greenwich, Danny Thorpe was even on hand to get stuck in helping the charities deliver this fantastic service.
The work continues...
Even though some of the strict restraints imposed during lockdown have been lifted, CACT has continued to work in partnership with the Royal Borough of Greenwich to set up and run the community hub, supporting people who are shielding, self-isolating or vulnerable in any way.
Part of this work included scaling up their Call centre which has made and received over 105,000 calls since the end of March.
CACT have also included prescription collection and delivery into their offering for local residents who couldn’t get to a pharmacy with over 1,800 collections made.
On top of all this CACT adapted their usual programmes to continue to support participants wherever possible, these included virtual meet-ups, keeping in touch with young people in the mentoring programme over the phone and internet, weekly Zoom catch-ups for the older people’s project reducing social isolation as well as regular befriending calls to over 200 isolated local residents.
Watch the video below to learn about the community hub.
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