[Updated 3rd of November 2020 to reflect change in Freephone number]
KILKENNY COUNTY COUNCIL TAKES THE LEAD IN JOINING TOGETHER LOCAL ORGANISATIONS TO ASSIST CITIZENS DURING COVID-19
DEDICATED COMMUNITY SUPPORT HELPLINE IS NOW AVAILABLE -
CALL 1800 326 522.
At the instigation of Minister Eoghan Murphy a Covid-19 Community Response Forum will be put in place for each City/County and co-ordinated by the Local Authority in each case.
A dedicated community support helpline is now established in Kilkenny County Council to assist "at risk" members of the public in accessing non-emergency and non-medical supports and advice during the current public health emergency. The confidential phoneline service is established by the new COVID-19 Kilkenny Community Response Forum, which includes over a dozen agencies and organisations. The helpline is focused primarily on ensuring that vulnerable members of the community or those living alone can access deliveries of groceries, medicine and fuels. The role of the Forum is to ensure that there is a co-ordinated community response and to enable all voluntary and statutory agencies to collaborate in support of our communities and particularly of our most vulnerable members.
The new phoneline is just one aspect of the Forum's work. Its core aim is contributing to the community-wide effort to limit the spread of COVID-19. Kilkenny County Council, through this group, will ensure that the wide variety of groups working across the City and County to assist those in need, will do so in an organised, collaborative and targeted way. The Council's COVID-19 Community Response Forum is there to ensure the very best use of the many resources assisting vulnerable persons with their daily needs at this unprecedented time, whether that is collecting medication, food shopping, social support and contact.
Chief Executive of Kilkenny County Council, Colette Byrne, explains "There are a number of agencies currently doing excellent work in delivering care to older and vulnerable people in our communities. These groups are currently operating independently of each other and Kilkenny County Council's role is to provide a targeted, integrated and coordinated approach to the delivery of these much-needed services to our more vulnerable citizens across the City and County during the COVID-19 pandemic. Kilkenny County Council is ideally placed both statutorily and regionally to channel this great work and provide the governance structure in partnership with all stakeholders. This public health crisis has changed life for so many, and we are there to help with that change. Our own staff whose day-jobs have changed due to this crisis, will be a key resource in the management and operation of this community support programme along with our partner agencies/groups. Already up and running since Friday, 27th March, 2020, Kilkenny County Council is providing a dedicated FREE Contact Number 1800 326 522 or 056 7794145 with the lines open from 8.00a.m. to 8.00p.m. seven days a week.".
Contact details of this new service will be promoted on the Council's website at www.kilkennycoco.ie, Facebook Page and Twitter @kilkennynotices. An information leaflet including the new freephone number and other information will be distributed around the City and County, particularly to vulnerable households over the coming days.
Included in the COVID-19 Kilkenny Community Response Forum are:
Chief Executive, Kilkenny County Council - Chair of Forum
- Health Service (HSE)
- Kilkenny County Council Staff led by Senior Executive Officer, Community Department
- Cathaoirleach of Kilkenny County Council
- Community Champion nominated by the Wheel.
- An Post
- Community Welfare Service
- An Garda Síochána
- Local Volunteer Centre
- Local Development Companies
- Order of Malta
- Civil Defence
- Irish Farmers Association (IFA)
- Public Participation Network
- Age Friendly Network
- Local Link
- Citizen's Information