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A coronavirus is a type of virus. As a group, coronaviruses are common across the world. Novel coronavirus (COVID-19) is a new strain of coronavirus first identified in Wuhan City, China. The most common symptoms of coronavirus (COVID-19) are a new continuous cough and/or high temperature. Generally, coronavirus can cause more severe symptoms in people with weakened immune systems, older people, and those with long-term conditions like diabetes, cancer and chronic lung disease. The NHS website has more information about how coronavirus is spread and answers common questions about the virus.
Common sense is key in a situation like this and there are things you can do to help stop germs like coronavirus spreading:
Further information available at:
Government guidance on Coronavirus
NHS advice on reducing risk
The single most important action we can all take in fighting coronavirus is to stay at home in order to protect the NHS and save lives. When we reduce our day-to-day contact with other people, we will reduce the spread of the infection. That is why the Government has introduced three new measures:
These measures must be followed by everyone. Separate advice is available for Households with possible coronavirus COVID-19 infection and for the most vulnerable who need to be shielded.
Full Government guidance on staying at home and away from others
The most common symptoms of coronavirus (COVID-19) are recent onset of: new continuous cough and / or high temperature. For most people, coronavirus (COVID-19) will be a mild illness.
Full Government guidance for households with possible coronavirus COVID-19 infection
This guidance is for people, including children, who are at very high risk of severe illness from coronavirus (COVID-19) because of an underlying health condition, and for their family, friends and carers. The NHS in England is directly contacting people with these conditions to provide further advice.
Shielding is a measure to protect extremely vulnerable people by minimising interaction between those who are extremely vulnerable and others. This means that those who are extremely vulnerable should not leave their homes, and within their homes should minimise all non-essential contact with other members of their household. This is to protect those who are at very high risk of severe illness from coronavirus (COVID-19) from coming into contact with the virus.
Full Government guidance on shielding and protecting vulnerable people from COVID-19
Village Hall Management Committees running charitable halls must act in the best interest of the hall charity and have a duty of care in providing a safe facility for the community to use.
Join the Cumbria Village Halls Network on Facebook @CumbriaVHN to keep in touch with other halls. This is a private group for village hall volunteers in Cumbria.
Previous guidance on social distancing has already led many hirers to cancel / postpone bookings. However, following the Government announcement on further social distancing measures, including measures to close entertainment, hospitality and indoor leisure facilities, most halls have now closed. Some remain open for the provision of essential services, in which case precautions must be taken:
Regarding cancellation of bookings, follow the steps in the hall hire agreement and conditions of hire and contact your insurance company to discuss what may be covered under your policy regarding cancellation of events due to the hall having to close.
Updated guidance from 25 March visit the Norris & Fisher website
Insurance Continuity Information for Clients and visit the Allied Westminster website
Village Hall business continuity:
ACRE (Action with Communities in Rural England)
Thousands of village halls will be temporarily closing their doors to the communities they have supported, with uncertainly about when they will be open again. Visit: acre.org.uk to find out what ACRE is doing to help.
Business Rate Relief
The ‘Expanded Retail Discount Relief’, or extension of Business Rates relief, applies to charitable halls and CASCs, meaning you should receive 100% rate relief this year. Details in the Government guidance (In case of queries by local authorities: Clause 7 and 12 (ii) of the guidance collectively apply, the reference to the Local Govt Act 1988, section 47 is to their power to grant discretionary relief. The Government will reimburse local authorities for the discretionary relief.)
Retail, Hospitality and Leisure Grant Fund (RHLGF)
£10,000 for premises with a rateable value of up to £15,000 and £25,000 for premises with a rateable value over £15,000 and less than £51,000. Find your rateable value at the VAO website.
Initial guidance inadvertently excluded from support those charities already in receipt of full discretionary rate relief. Section 24 in Version 3 of the Government guidance on business and support grant funding issued on 1st April, has clarified that charities already in receipt of full discretionary relief are eligible for RHLG.
Further information, including why a Local Authority may say a hall is not eligible can be found in the ACRE guidance
Building / Maintenance Work
The Construction Leadership Council have published guidance for the construction sector during COVID-19, which has been endorsed by Government. If you have building work in progress at your hall or plan to use the closure period to complete maintenance work, this is the guidance contractors need to be following: www.constructionleadershipcouncil.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2020/03/Site-Operating-Procedures-23-March-2020.pdf
Guidance about PRS/PPL fees during this time: pplprs.co.uk/business-update/
Childcare settings (nurseries, pre-schools, afterschool clubs)
Government has published new guidance for: Early Years and Childcare Settings
The Charity Commission has issued guidance for charities during the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak and has general guidance on charities and risk management
The Government has issued guidance for employers and businesses
Events and activities are being postponed or cancelled following the latest guidance on staying at home and social distancing.
The NCVO has taken down the paywall on all of their member-only advice & guidance: knowhow.ncvo.org.uk/. It’s free to all charities while the crisis continues. No sign-in needed. The NCVO is also offering a range of free or subsidised support for members.
The Small Charities Coalition has a dedicated section about Covid-19 on its website: www.smallcharities.org.uk/corona-virus-advice-information-and-resources/
The Civil Society also has some information on what charities need to know: www.civilsociety.co.uk/news/coronavirus-what-charities-need-to-know.html
The Fundraising Regulator has advice: www.fundraisingregulator.org.uk/more-from-us/news/coronavirus-covid-19-advice-fundraising about events
The Institute of Fundraising has information for fundraisers. www.institute-of-fundraising.org.uk/news/information-for-fundraisers-about-coronavirus/
Many people are looking to help others in their community at this difficult time, and much can be achieved by encouraging individuals to support their neighbours.
Free Public Liability Insurance for groups
Cumbria Neighbourhood Watch has organised free Public Liability Insurance for groups involved in COVID-19 community support. Groups need to register with Neighbourhood Watch, have a Community Emergency Plan and Risk Assessment.
Further details and template documents are available at ACT’s Community Emergency Planning page.
Vulnerable people and elderly people in your community who are staying at home, self-isolating or shielding may need the support of volunteers - could you help?
SupportCumbria.org.uk is a collaboration of agencies and communities across Cumbria to offer volunteering support at a community level. They are looking for volunteers of all levels. You might have specific skills to offer or may want to help with tasks like shopping, dog walking, collecting prescriptions and other help.
Help identify the community support available in your area by registering your voluntary and community support group. This will help the agencies behind Support Cumbria to link volunteers and local groups and ensure we have the right support options in each district for people in need.
For more information and to register as a volunteer or volunteer group visit: supportcumbria.org.uk
Eden Project Communities
The Eden Project Communities and partners have launched the Community Action Response to encourage everyone to do what they can to support their communities, and particularly vulnerable and isolated people during the Covid-19 crisis. Download the Poster.
Cumbria Emergency Support Helpline – Tel: 0800 783 1966
For vulnerable people at high risk of becoming seriously ill as a result of COVID-19, who do not have support available from friends, family or neighbours and are struggling for food, medicines or other essential supplies. Open Monday to Friday 9am – 5pm, and Weekends 10am – 2pm.
Further details and online support request form at: cumbria.gov.uk/coronavirus/helpline.asp
If you are concerned that an adult is at risk of abuse or neglect please call:
To report concerns about a child, visit: cumbriasafeguardingchildren.co.uk/
Neighbourhood Watch has produced guidance on protecting the isolated and vulnerable
Age UK has produced guidance on practical ways to help older people
People are already giving generously to a Cumbria COVID-19 Fund set up by Cumbria Community Foundation. The Fund offers local charitable and community organisations funding to support emerging challenges faced within local communities as a result of the continuing threat of coronavirus.
How to Apply:
For details visit: www.cumbriafoundation.org/fund/covid19-response-fund/
Cumbria CVS have staff who can provide support if a group needs help to apply: email@example.com
How to Donate:
The Foundation is aware that many people and businesses will be struggling financially, however, for those that are able and would like to donate to the Fund, they can Donate online or by Phone: 01900 825760.
Charities Aid Foundation (CAF) Coronavirus Emergency Fund
To help smaller charitable organisations affected by the impact of Covid-19. Grants of up to £10,000 are available to help them continue to deliver much needed support to our communities across the UK. Intended as a rapid response fund, grants will be paid to selected organisations within 14 days of application. Visit: www.cafonline.org/charities/grantmaking/caf-coronavirus-emergency-fund
Prince’s Countryside Fund Rural Response Emergency Grants Programme
The Prince’s Countryside Fund is inviting applications for emergency funding from farming and rural community support groups, who are providing assistance to counter the effects of isolation during the Coronavirus pandemic. With thanks to Players of People’s Postcode Lottery, groups can apply for grant funding of up to £2,500 if they: are providing emergency relief to vulnerable or isolated individuals or; are providing support to farmers and farm businesses affected by the Coronavirus pandemic or; are helping rural or farming communities to cope with the Coronavirus pandemic.
The National Lottery Community Fund – Coronavirus Updates
For details of how the National Lottery Community Fund has been reviewed and the latest information about grants available visit: www.tnlcommunityfund.org.uk/about/coronavirus-updates
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