A statement on COVID-19

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A statement on COVID-19

Action with Communities in Rural Kent, The Old Granary, Penstock Hall Farm, Canterbury Road, Brabourne, Kent TN25 5LL. Charity Number: 212796. Telephone: 01303-813790 Web: www.ruralkent.org.uk Email: info@ruralkent.org.uk Facebook: www.facebook.com/ruralkent Twitter: www.twitter.com/ruralkent

Action with Communities in Rural Kent:
Statement in response to COVID-19 (coronavirus) 23rd March 2020

Our position on COVID-19 (coronavirus)

Action with Communities in Rural Kent will only pass on information on the coronavirus that is already in the public domain through HM Government, Public Health England and/or NHS channels.

For the latest public information and advice relating to COVID-19 please go to the Government coronavirus website https://www.gov.uk/coronavirus and NHS coronavirus website https:// www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/

Our role as an organisation is to help rural communities address socio-economic problems that arise from, or are made worse by, a rural geography. Much of this results in great innovation worth replicating and celebrating!

In the case of COVID-19 we are focusing on helping those groups, charities, social enterprises, companies, public sector agencies and partnerships based in, or working to support, individual rural communities and/or larger groupings of them (right up to the entirety of Kent & Medway) to manage the impacts arising from spread of the virus. These impacts may include affecting volunteer numbers, alteration in provision of essential services or increased experiences of isolation.

Conversely COVID-19 may lead (and we are seeing it already) to creation of new and novel ways for rural communities to improve wellbeing, and thrive, long into the future; where we can we wish to support these and celebrate them so that great new ideas can be taken up anywhere.

Our understanding

Much of the work we undertake is to support people who come together to do something good for their rural community. Within this are a significant numbers of people that Government may describe as “at risk” from COVID-19 (let alone any of us who may contract the virus or live/work with somebody who does.) Indeed, within the structure of our organisation there are several falling within this “at risk” group too.

We know therefore that the work of many we support will be impacted – and understand why.

Our services

We have, where necessary, been re-designing services so that we do not “go missing”

for our beneficiaries. This means we will still deliver support services for village halls, to tackle isolation, help communities develop housing they need, foster an inclusive rural economy and provide policy insight to government departments but that how we do this will – in many cases – change for the foreseeable future.

You can still contact us by telephone or email – 01303-813790 and info@ruralkent.org.uk are the general contacts if you have not engaged with us before. We are able to provide a range of guidance and project planning support, albeit remotely, as well as some “virtual networking” activity so you can share great ideas between rural communities.

We have moved to a system of home-working for all staff, cancelled public events and the final winter-schedule visits from the Rural Coffee & Information Project.

We are also working with partner agencies within Kent and nationwide (particularly via the ACRE Network of Rural Community Councils such as ourselves, so as to share knowledge on responses to COVID-19 in rural communities across England) so as to provide the best support to our beneficiaries that we can.

Feedback to us

If there is anything you think we need to take into consideration when working with you, information of challenges you face or have great stories that you would wish to share please do get in touch with us at info@ruralkent.org.uk

Keeping in touch with what we – and people across rural Kent – are up to

If you are a member of ours then you will receive updates relating to our work electronically from time to time.
You can also follow us – or simply look us up – via certain social media channels – in particular Facebook www.facebook.com/ruralkent and Twitter www.twitter.com/ruralkent Specific service areas also have a Facebook presence – the Rural Coffee & Information Project can be found at www.facebook.com/RKCoffeeProject whilst the Kent Community Housing Hub is at www.facebook.com/CLHKent

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  • Email: info@ruralkent.org.uk
  • Phone: 01303 813790
  • Address: The Old Granary, Penstock Hall Farm, Canterbury Road,
    East Brabourne, Kent TN25 5LL