Around 170 people have been in touch with Tracy Squire - Childrens and Families Youth Worker for St Laurence’s Church in Scalby - since she launched an offer of help to people in the area.
She and a team of 30 volunteers delivered 2,300 letters - one for each household in the parish - letting people know they could be called on for support.
“The letters went out and I had calls within the first two hours,” said Tracy.
“The calls were from those in need, those who were anxious about the unknown and those willing to help if needed, which was brilliant.”
When they heard about the idea, many of the church’s congregation stepped up to help collect shopping and prescriptions, while others would ring those who were at risk of loneliness to offer a friendly voice and some conversation.
“I would say 95 per cent of those I have spoken to, arranged shopping, prescriptions or regular phone calls for have never been to our church and that’s wonderful,” Tracy said.
“It means we’re helping to break barriers between our church and our community and meet people we may not have done otherwise.”
As well as offers of help from local businesses, she said the work has led to her hearing heart-warming stories of the situation bringing people together.
“One lady had gone to her door to clap for the NHS and had spoken to her neighbour, who is usually out at work all day, for the first time," she said.
“The neighbour had then offered to shop for her, which was a beautiful yet unexpected outcome to the NHS support.
“The people we are helping are so grateful -we’ve met some amazing people.
“I’m very blessed to be employed by St Laurence’s Church thanks to the generosity of church members, many of who are elderly and therefore don’t benefit directly from my usual work but who cherish and value youth work and our younger congregation families.
“It’s an added bonus for me that I have got to know so many of them through this tragic situation.”
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