Hundreds of Hayling Helpers work together to look after islanders in self-isolation

HUNDREDS of volunteers are looking after residents on every Hayling Island street after a group of helpers was set up to tackle the coronavirus crisis.

Friday, 27th March 2020, 4:01 pm
Updated Monday, 30th March 2020, 1:25 pm

Islander Wendy Ball has rounded up a caring team of people after setting up the Hayling Helpers group on Facebook to keep the community safe and happy while self-isolating.

In just a few days after putting out the call to action, Wendy was flooded with offers of help from people around the area, who are now working hard to support people stuck in their homes.

‘I honestly am so overwhelmed with the generosity of people who are willing to risk themselves to help others,’ Wendy told The News.

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Hayling Helpers has been set up on Hayling Island to help the community get through the coronavirus crisis. Pictured are: Tania Jones, Mark Coates, Iona Harkness, Wendy Ball

‘I can’t even explain how overwhelmed I am. I never thought for one minute it would ever grow as quick as it did and so many people would do something for nothing.’

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With no external financial support, the group is working hard to keep itself going and relies on the kindness of the public.

Wendy said: ‘I’ve got a fantastic group of volunteers, it’s 100 per cent relying on goodwill.’

‘As the days go by we’re having more and more people who are having to stay at home and they need our support. Each day we just get slightly busier and busier.’

Throughout the Hayling Helpers’ formation, it has been important to use existing community groups and resources such as volunteer staff from The Heart of Hayling Boxing Academy who have been given the task of supporting chemists on the island in delivering prescriptions.

Hayling Island Community Centre has also been repurposed and is now a community hub where donations such as non-perishable food and household items can be received and pick-ups loaded for delivery by Hayling Helpers.

Phone lines are manned at the centre from 9am to 4pm each day so anyone who is not on Facebook and who has lost or did not receive their leaflet from the Hayling Helpers can call and be put in touch with their nearest helper.

For more information, visit the Hayling Helpers on Facebook or call the Hayling Helpline at the community centre on (023) 9246 7545.