COVID-19 COMMUNITY CHAMPIONS

COVID-19 COMMUNITY CHAMPIONS

Warrington Borough Council received £318,000 through the government’s Community Champions scheme to put measures in place to support groups most at risk from coronavirus, including people with disabilities, people from ethnic minorities, and those without access to the internet.

Warrington Disability Partnership, alongside Warrington Voluntary Action, have been commissioned to deliver the project and funding will be used to expand work to support those most at risk from coronavirus and encourage vaccine take up in Warrington. 

What are 'Community Champions'?

A mix of paid staff and volunteers who work directly with local communities to communicate the latest accurate health information to residents.

They will be a trusted voice in their local community, working to encourage take-up of the COVID vaccine, as more people become eligible to receive their jab. They will also feedback on any issues or questions from residents to help make sure the right support is being offered, at the right time.

Read the WBC page here.

Read about the WDP Approach here.

How will they engage with communities?

Community Champions will use a range of methods and materials to communicate timely and accurate information. They will receive relevant training and regular updates so they are able to support communities.

Community Survey

We would be grateful if you would share your views and experience with us by spending approximately 20 minutes completing a short survey. All those completing a survey have the chance of winning one of twenty £30 ‘Love to Shop’ vouchers.

We want you to feel comfortable sharing your views and can assure you that your answers will be kept anonymous and will not be shared with anyone in any way that will identify you.

Complete the survey here

COVID Chats

The champions will engage with members of their community through 'COVID Chats'.

These will be short, formal conversations with local people to find out how they are feeling at that moment in time about coronavirus, vaccinations and testing. This will help us to understand what is needed in terms of updated information, advice and guidance.

People engaged with will have the opportunity to take up further support on a wide range of health and wellbeing initiatives including:

  • COVID myth-busting
  • building back confidence and independence
  • understanding the effects of COVID on disabled people
  • lifestyle, health and wellbeing workshops

Information can also be provided in a wide range of accessible formats, including:

  • other languages
  • large print
  • braille
  • easy read
  • video with sign language 

You can also request that the Community Champions join you at local meetings and events.

Get in touch

If you would like to find out more about the project or would like to speak to a Community Champion, please contact:

For people who have a disability or long-term health condition:

For Black, Asian, minority ethnic groups and the Eastern European Community:

Warrington Voluntary Action (WVA)

WVA has appointed two Community Champions – Atefeh and Shaylah – who are available to support people in Warrington. Their focus is on supporting people from Black, Asian, minority ethnic groups and the Eastern European Community.

We have started to work closely with the Polish Centre of Education and Culture who have appointed Iwona and Sylwia as their Community Champions to support local Polish communities. WVA are also working with Warrington Ethnic Communities Association and the Citizens Advice to extend their reach to the most at-risk communities. The Citizens Advice have nominated Debs Naylor as their Community Champion. 

WVA's champions will also play a key role in ensuring support is inclusive for people whose first language isn’t English. They will work to engage with members, networks and beneficiaries through existing channels, support local testing and vaccination sites, provide additional telephone and online engagement, and share relevant messages through social media.

During the coming months, Atefeh, Shaylah and WVA’s army of volunteer Champions will be out in the community sharing COVID-19 vaccine advice and information to boost local vaccination take-up and to providing any necessary guidance and support.

Atefeh said: “I’m here to support people during this challenging period, encouraging uptake of the COVID vaccine, spreading facts and myth-busting to reduce vaccine hesitancy within different communities.

“As a non-English Community Champion, I understand the issues that arise for people from different ethnicities and cultures, and those whose first language isn’t English. They may have more questions that need to be answered and someone on hand to discuss the importance of vaccination, reassure them about the effectiveness and safety of the vaccine, and help them to picture the post-pandemic world that we’re all working towards.

“I recently had my first dose of the COVID vaccine and would like to share my experience with others. I booked an appointment at Warrington Hospital’s vaccination hub using their online booking system – it was easy to use and only took me a couple of minutes to enter my details and receive my booking ticket, which clearly showed the date and time of my appointment.

“I was looking forward to having the jab as it would be the first step in being protected against COVID. On 25 May, I headed to the hospital for my appointment at the outpatient ward, which was set up as the vaccination site. There were people ahead of me waiting for their jabs but the queue moved quickly and the system was well organised – everyone was keeping to social distancing and wearing face coverings.

“When it was my turn, the member of staff introduced themselves in a friendly manner, provided me with information about the vaccine, and were able to answer all of my questions. I felt no pain when having the injection and will make sure I attend my appointment for my second dose.”

 

The Gateway, 89 Sankey Street, Warrington, WA1 1SR Tel: 01925 246880
Registered in England & Wales as a Registered Charity 1129343
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