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Forres Area Community Trust is coordinating the Covid-19 lockdown volunteer groups

By Garry McCartney

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FACT's town hall headquarters.
FACT's town hall headquarters.

A LOCAL enterprise focused on improving the district has been working flat-out to co-ordinate Covid-19 lockdown volunteers.

Forres Area Community Trust (FACT), formed in 2011 and and managed by a volunteer board of nine, have been busy with requests for support, processing volunteers and helping out other groups that need information or resources.

Older person’s co-ordinator, Kirsty Williams, confirmed FACT is working with a range of volunteers, organisations and local coronavirus groups to help those who are in need.

These include: Covid-19 Mutual Aid Forres; Covid-19 Mutual Aid Forres/Mannachie; Covid-19 Mutual Aid Forres - Ferryhill; Covid-19 Mutual Aid Forres - Sueno; Covid-19 Mutual Aid Kinloss and Findhorn; Darnaway Community Group; Dyke, Kintessack, Brodie and Area Coronavirus Support Network; Finderne; and Findhorn Connect.

Ms Williams said: "People need help getting shopping and prescriptions. There is great work being carried out by local response groups that have sprung up throughout the Forres, Findhorn, Kinloss, Dyke and Finderne areas.

"The response from local people to volunteer has been absolutely phenomenal."

FACT have adapted their services to use online conferencing, email, phone and digital tools like Discord to communicate and share information with volunteers, clients and others who need help.

With the continued lockdown, FACT are aware that more people will be feeling increasingly socially isolated and would appreciate someone to talk to. To meet this need, they have volunteers available to chat over the phone.

Findhorn and Kinloss Community Council chairwoman, Anne Skene said: "As lockdown continues it may get harder for people to manage their time and may feel anxious. We encourage people to chat with their neighbours and reach out to those around them by phone or email."

If you or someone you know would like to chat, call FACT on 01309674 388 or email info@forresarea.org

"We will get in touch," said Ms Williams. "We will find someone near to you who can help with a chat, shopping or prescription pick-ups."

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