Practical help during Covid-19

You might need to self-isolate at any time due to coronavirus, but there are still many local services available to help you with things such as getting food delivered or medication picked up.

Help for all with everyday tasks

We’ve partnered with onHand, an organisation whose volunteers can provide practical help for everyone, free of charge, including: 

  • shopping – you pay for the groceries and a volunteer does the shop for you 
  • collecting medication from a pharmacy or shop
  • dog walking 
  • gardening 
  • companionship phone calls 
  • tech help – setting up a smart phone, tablet, laptop or Wi-Fi
  • other errands, such as taking the bins out, collecting pensions, take laundry to the launderette or parcels to the post office 

To get assistance for you or someone you know, contact onHand online using their referral form or call 020 3488 2912.

If you’re vulnerable, need to self-isolate or care for someone due to Covid-19

Stay home safely support service

Lambeth’s Stay home safely support service is a free, dedicated service providing practical and emotional help for those who need to self-isolate or take time off to care for someone due to Covid-19. It is run by Age UK Lambeth and is available to any resident aged over 18.

Call 0800 054 1215, 9am to 5pm, 7 days a week, or find out more in Advice and help to self-isolate

NHS Volunteer Responders

Practical and emotional help is available from volunteers for people who are vulnerable, need to self-isolate, have caring responsibilities, or are frontline health or care staff.

Call 0808 196 3646, 8am to 8pm, 7 days a week, or find out more at nhsvolunteerresponders.org.uk.

Help with food and essentials

Food shops, supermarkets and markets

Asda, Marks & Spencer and Waitrose offer volunteer gift cards that you can top up for a neighbour or volunteer to use to collect and pay for the shopping for you. 

Sainsbury’s (0800 917 8557) and Morrisons (0345 611 6111) offer telephone shopping services for collection or delivery for vulnerable residents.

At the start of the pandemic many food wholesalers and local food shops began offering home deliveries of fresh produce and groceries, and are still doing so. For wholesalers continuing with retail home delivery, see the New Covent Garden Market website for more information. For up-to-date information on local shops, try neighbourhood groups on social media or mutual aid groups (below). 

Food banks and emergency help

  • Lambeth Larder is a local organisation that can help link you with emergency food, advice, hot meals (for example, from soup kitchens and lunch clubs), advice and debt support. They keep a detailed directory of local help on their website, lambethlarder.org
  • Vouchers for emergency food packages can be given by local organisations and agencies such as Age UK Lambeth, Citizen’s Advice, children’s centres, housing and health visitors. Contact Age UK Lambeth’s MYcommunity Gateway helpline on 0333 360 3700 as the first point of contact to get help.
  • Mutual aid groups are community-run groups organising support such as food deliveries to neighbours who are self-isolating. Groups are organised by ward, and sometimes by smaller areas such as streets. Visit the Lambeth Covid-19 Mutual Aid Facebook group to find a group near you. These are volunteer-led groups, so please be careful about sharing personal details and do not give people you don’t know access to your bank cards.
  • If you have a Taxicard, you can use it to have shopping delivered to you by taxi. Friends and family can also use your Taxicard to get a taxi for picking up pre-paid shopping on your behalf. To book call 020 7763 5001 or email taxicard@londoncouncils.gov.uk

Help with getting medication

Repeats

If you need help with getting your usual medication, you may be able to get repeat prescriptions by arranging for your GP to send an electronic prescription to a nominated pharmacy. Please contact your GP/doctor’s surgery to find out more and arrange.

Delivery

If you are self-isolating or vulnerable, there are several options for getting medicine delivered to you:

  • ask friends or family to collect and drop off for you
  • call Age UK Lambeth’s MYcommunity Gateway on 0333 360 3700 for advice on medication delivery services
  • contact your local pharmacy – many have delivery services – or search online for pharmacy networks that have websites you can order through, for home delivery.