Croydon Council has handed down grants to three local organisations working closely with vulnerable residents over the age of 65.
Asian Resource Centre of Croydon (ARCC), Croydon Neighbourhood Care Association (CNCA) and Age UK Croydon will be working together to each provide welfare calls to 500 residents – a total of 1500 across the whole project.
The joint Winter Check Calls project will focus on people who are known to their organisations but not currently in receipt of statutory council-run adult social care services.
Partnering with three established and trusted Croydon-based community organisations will help contact residents that do not regularly interact with council services. This important work ensures those with highest need do not fall through the cracks in getting the support they need.
Calls will make sure residents are safe and well, and informally assess individual circumstances. Following calls, each organisation will consider necessary onward referrals within the three partner organisations, council, or other sources of support.
All 1500 residents will be contacted by the end of March. Partners have begun reaching out to residents already and have said they are getting a great response from calls.
Sue McVicker, chief executive officer for Croydon Neighbourhood Care Association, said: “CNCA are pleased to work with partners to call or visit vulnerable adults across the borough, ensuring they are safe and well. By working in partnership, we can fast track anyone we are concerned about to adult social care or for support with getting food, medication, and housing or benefit advice.
“If anyone has concerns about a friend, neighbour or resident, our three organisations are very happy to provide any necessary support and advice.”
Ima Miah, chief executive officer for Asian Resource Centre of Croydon, said: “There is incredible human value to a personal call during the winter when elderly people are more likely to be isolated. These calls can identify areas for further support but also provide helpful informal troubleshooting discussions around everyday issues.
“Many residents are familiar to us already, having built relationships through Covid-19 befriending work. It’s great we now can continue this contact with a consistent approach across all partner organisations.”
Susan Underhill, programmes director for Age UK Croydon, said: “This programme is providing a timely resource to support older people in Croydon during what is always a challenging winter period. It is helping Age UK Croydon to work with partners to reach out for a friendly, person centred phone conversation to understand individuals’ situations and connect them with support and solutions.
“This work is making a significant and positive difference when it is most needed.”
Councillor Manju Shahul-Hameed, cabinet member for communities, safety and business recovery said:
“We’re incredibly grateful to tap into our partners’ expertise and networks to reach potentially vulnerable adults that may not otherwise be on the council’s radar.
“Our statutory care services do important work, but initiatives like this are a key tool to reach as many vulnerable residents as possible, identifying any additional support that might be needed.”