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Coronavirus: information and advice

We're constantly reviewing and making changes to some of our services in response to the coronavirus crisis.

See the latest updates

Temporary accommodation and food provision

Updated Friday 24 April 2020

Support for vulnerable individuals seeking accommodation and food in the city is being adapted rapidly in response to the coronavirus situation and public health requirements. This is a collective effort, bringing together public services, a range of organisations, groups and individuals.

If you are concerned about someone you have seen sleeping out, please report the details through Streetlink to help us manage information accurately.

Accommodation

Since 27 March, 60 individuals have been offered accommodation, following government instructions to all local authorities.

We are securing additional units of temporary accommodation that help support self-isolation. This will differ to the type of accommodation used usually and relies on assistance from local businesses and organisations. More than 40 new units have been set up so far.

As is the case all year round, the people we see sleeping out changes from night-to-night, with new arrivals most days. This is why everyone involved works to engage with and find solutions for people on a daily basis.

All councils are following Public Health England’s guidance for services supporting rough sleepers.

In Norwich, our Pathways team already brings together specialist agencies to make sure anyone sleeping out can access support, and we are working very closely with them as part of business continuity planning during this evolving situation.

Food provision

We are working with partners, community groups and volunteers to coordinate food deliveries to vulnerable groups. This includes those classified as vulnerable by the government because of the coronavirus risks, as well as those individuals in the city centre seeking food or accommodation.

The expert medical guidance on social distancing issued to manage the outbreak has highlighted the importance of best practice around food provision for the most vulnerable in our communities. This is about making sure that we get food to people safely, rather than bringing people to food, and we are working positively with a number of groups involved in providing food in this way.

We are making arrangements for food to be delivered to hostels and other temporary accommodation so that individuals can access this safely. As part of our work to coordinate this approach, we will also be facilitating medicine deliveries from government to those most at risk in temporary accommodation.

Groups that have been providing food in the city centre that can no longer do so under government guidance on gatherings are invited to join our efforts in continuing to support people.

There are a number of ways you can be involved safely; from assisting with food deliveries to donating any excess food.

Volunteer

It is crucial that vulnerable residents are able to get access to essential food and medicines during the outbreak of covid-19 (coronavirus).

Any businesses or organisations that are willing and able to help in this task should complete this form. All support is greatly appreciated in this great time of need.

For individuals, Voluntary Norfolk are coordinating all the offers of time from those healthy enough to help. They will link us with any volunteers after getting you on board.

Set up a neighbour support group

Use our sharing platform, LUMi, for guides and downloadable letters and for further guidance. To let us know what streets you are covering, email community@norwich.gov.uk

Make a donation

Norfolk Community Foundation are taking donations which will then be put into voluntary groups who can redistribute money to vital services for those more vulnerable.

You can also donate small food parcels to your local Foodbank.