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News Report Page 4 of 8
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Mayor's heartfelt thanks to volunteer army

THE Mayor of Liverpool, Joe Anderson, has written a heartfelt thank you to the 1,600 strong army of Liverpool volunteers who have offered to give up their time to help those in need in the City.  In the email, he talks about how the outpouring of community spirit has made him 'immensely proud' and focuses on the essential roles many of the volunteers have taken on including delivering food parcels, driving key workers and picking up the phone to chat to people who feel vulnerable and isolated. The volunteering programme is being managed by Liverpool City Council in partnership with LCVS and it's expected that demand for the existing volunteers will increase over the coming weeks. The aim is to ensure residents receive the help they need; whether it's essential food packages, prescription delivery or simply someone to talk to on the phone to combat loneliness. Originally 3,000 people came forward to volunteer their services. However, this was prior to lockdown, so once shielding and self isolation came in to force, it came to light that not all those who initially offered could now do so. The helpline for residents who have no network of family, friends or neighbours who can help them with a range of basic tasks is still available. The number is:- 0151 233 3066 and will be open from 8am to 6pm, 7 days a week. Alternatively, people can request help online. For the latest information and advice, Liverpool City Council has also set up an online portal:- . There are also dedicated social media feeds on Facebook and on Twitter.Com.

Turn a waste of space into an exercise place

ACCORDING to research by Admiral Home Insurance only a 33% of homeowners use their garage every day for its intended use while most treat it as a dumping ground for unwanted clutter.  With the latest Government announcement stating people must self isolate and maintain social distancing, this could be as good a time as any to have a spring clean and sort through the spaces around the home that have become full of unused household items. A garage could be a good place to start as according to Admiras' research.  45% of homeowners never or rarely use their garage to park their car. Many of those who don't keep their car in the garage, it's because there's no space as it's filled with other items ranging from garden tools to furniture and household items, including:- fridge freezers and washing machines.

Clearing out the junk from your garage could have the added benefit of creating extra space to work from home while we are all staying at home during the Coronavirus outbreak. With gyms and numerous parks closed to stop the spread of the Coronavirus pandemic, many Brits will be relying on home workouts to keep fit. Creating space in your garage could provide extra room to store home workout equipment, such as large cardio machines or heavy weight sets.

While converting your garage into an office, or home gym can create extra space in your home, it's important to make sure your garage is secure to avoid break ins or equipment damage. Admiral warns that making simple security errors, such as leaving your garage unlocked, could lead to your home insurance being invalidated. It's also important to check your policy cover as some insurers might have lower limits for items stolen from garages, or might not cover them at all.

Despite many wasting the space they have in their garage, 46% of homeowners asked have admitted that not having 1 would be a deal breaker when it comes to buying a new home, so if you ever think of selling up in the future, when the world returns to normality this could be a good time to sort through your garage and make it as attractive to potential buyers as possible.

Noel Summerfield, Head of Admiral Home Insurance, said:- "Our research shows as a nation, very few of us use our garages to park a car in and instead use them as a dumping ground. Now could be as good as time as any to have a sort through so you can make the most out of this additional space during the UK lockdown. Especially because it could provide some much needed extra space to work in or to work out in. Looking through things you no longer need or use could turn out to be incredibly valuable for someone else, so you could consider donating your unwanted household items to a charity that is supporting the more vulnerable people struggling during this time. Just remember to check before you donate as charities might not be able to accept physical donations right now but could be looking for more donations in the future."

LGA responds to social care Coronavirus plan

RESPONDING to the Government's announcement of its social care plan for dealing with Coronavirus, Cllr Ian Hudspeth, Chairman of the Local Government Association's Community Wellbeing Board, said:- "Social care services are playing a vital role during the Coronavirus crisis and the plaudits for the dedicated staff working on the frontline in care homes and people's own homes are well deserved. The challenges faced by these staff everyday are huge as they strive to keep vulnerable people safe and to care for those who are infected with the Coronavirus in settings and circumstances that do not always lend themselves to managing isolation. Access to sufficient PPE and testing are vital to the safety of staff and the people they care for and we are pleased this plan provides assurance that these will be available. The current arrangements for accessing PPE by Councils and care providers are not fit for purpose and are failing to provide what is needed on the frontline. It is vital that the arrangements set out in the plan are urgently translated to reality on the ground. There are many calls on the ₤1.6 billion provided by the Government to help Councils with additional costs of supporting vulnerable people and delivering other services during the Covid-19 crisis. Councils will need access to additional resources to ensure they can continue to support care providers to deliver care and support to older and disabled people in the coming weeks."

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