Food Aid

Community Immunity Update, 30th March, 2020   As we head into week 2 since launching Community Immunity we wanted to update our wonderful village on the latest developments.

First and foremost, thank you to our activated volunteers for all your hard work through another busy and challenging week. We commend you for your flexibility and resolve during what has been, at times, a virtual rollercoaster.

Secondly, we want to highlight how the Community Immunity scheme falls within the core values of BERT. Two main areas define our work at the moment, promoting public safety and supporting those in hardship.

Our network of delivery drivers provide those who are self-isolating for health reasons, or those following government advice, a practical way to achieve their goals. We have delivered everything from essential medicines to essential newspapers, helping cats to survive by taking them to the vet, and helping local businesses to survive by taking their products to local customers. As the weeks pass by we will evaluate, refine and perfect our processes, based on your suggestions for how we can improve.

The rapidly changing nature of the current situation means that straight after COBRA-BORIS we’ve had our own COBRA-BERT to adapt and change at pace. At times, we’ve just about managed to keep up, but we could never have done it without the support of the local community, our valued volunteers and the guidance of the many organisations who advise and guide us.

We have matched up residents who are isolating with neighbours who can shop. We have empowered those who are bewildered by a new way of living to cope and thrive. And this week, for those who are in desperate need , we have launched Foodaid Brockham to provide food packages to those members of our community who simply do not know where their next meal is coming from. Foodaid Brockham is a program set up jointly by BERT and Brockham Christ Church, with the support of the Parish Council.

Foodaid is available to anyone who needs assistance right now. It is not dependent on your normal circumstances. And it is discreet, with deliveries going out amongst the many other deliveries we make for local business. In times of high demand, we may need to ask some basic questions to ensure we get the food to those who need it most, but that will be done only in the strictest confidence. Our first delivery is on Wednesday, this week, and we currently have available packages we can allocate. If you need food assistance, please get in touch via foodaid@bertbrockham.org.uk or by calling 01737 402821.

Please visit and “like” our facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/foodaidbrockham/) and spread the word to friends and neighbours who may need our help.

From here we will begin to roll out our volunteer network even further – having made sure the policies, processes and safety mandates are in place. One by one we will deploy everyone who has offered their assistance, making the most use of each person’s strengths, skills, and experience. But we also need to ensure that our programs last for the long term. If we deploy everyone at once, we risk spreading ourselves too thin for when our first volunteers have to stop their duties for self-isolation, illness, work, or a desire for change. Rest assured, everyone will have a chance to help as the workload grows and evolves at speed. If your situation has changed and you want to get involved, do get in touch.

We remind everyone to give our volunteers identified by a red tag a friendly welcome, and to keep that 2 metre distance ensuring everyone is safe.

Lastly, we want to reassure each and every one of you that BERT is coordinating with the Parish Council, Brockham Christ Church, our local businesses, pharmacies and surgery, as well as the District Council, to name but a few , working day and night to support our community during these unprecedented times.

Three messages to end:
Tell people to stay in.
Tell people to stay safe.
Tell people to stay positive.

Together we will create our Community Immunity.

Issy Heppenstall, BERT Trustee and Harriet Pollard, Volunteer Coordinator