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Highland Council launches freephone helpline to offer help to those needing support or advice during Covid-19 coronavirus pandemic; new line can also be used by those looking to volunteer their support in their Ross-shire community


By Philip Murray


The Highland Council logo at council HQ, Glenurquhart Road, Inverness...The Highland Council logo.Picture: SPP. Image No. ..
The Highland Council logo at council HQ, Glenurquhart Road, Inverness...The Highland Council logo.Picture: SPP. Image No. ..

A FREE helpline is being launched by Highland Council to help those seeking assistance or wishing to volunteer during the coronavirus outbreak.

The new freephone line, which will launch at 2pm this afternoon (Tuesday), will offer assistance and advice, as well as collect details of people and community groups who are eager to volunteer support during Covid-19.

The single line number – 0300 303 1362 – will connect callers to relevant council specialist teams and will operate Monday to Friday from 8am to 6pm. All calls are free.

Callers will be able to get advice on benefits and personal support, education and social care. There will also be advice for businesses who may need help with financial support.

Helpline staff will also be signposting callers to other organisations that can provide help and assistance as well as gathering offers from individuals or community groups wishing to volunteer.

The service is operated by council staff and Eden Court volunteers who will be home based. Staffing levels will be kept under review to respond to the demand.

Chief Executive Donna Manson said: “I want to thank everyone involved for all their hard work for getting this helpline up and running in such a short time.

"As well as Highland Council employees volunteering we are also very grateful for the assistance of Eden Court staff.

"The Helpline is now in place to help those most in need of assistance, so we are requesting that anyone who can continue to use our on-line forms and resources do so as much as possible.”

The new helpline is just one of several actions the council says it is taking. Work to set up a number of Humanitarian Assistance Centres across the Highlands is under way and details are expected to be published in the next 24 hours.

The council is also continuing to co-ordinate all offers of community group support, while the Highland’s 3rd Sector is co-ordinating individual offers of support.

Click here to read more Ross-shire news.



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