Thousands helped across Doncaster borough

Doncaster Council has handed out more than 1,700 food parcels, collected and delivered nearly 1,400 prescriptions and contacted nearly 1,000 people who requested help via a self-isolation form, Mayor Ros Jones has said.

By George Torr
Thursday, 23rd April 2020, 2:01 pm
Updated Thursday, 23rd April 2020, 2:02 pm

Council bosses have also said they have responded to 8,772 calls to the dedicated Covid-19 helpline and contacted others who got in touch through email.

The council has received 3,200 applications for government business grant support totalling in excess of £35.5 million.

However, there are still about 1,200 eligible businesses who have not yet got in touch.

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Ros Jones, Doncaster mayor.

In response to a council pledge to support voluntary groups, the ‘Community Covid-19 Fighting Back Fund’ has been launched for groups able to help the most vulnerable people.

So far, 50 applications have been received to cover both small and larger projects.

Other statistics show the council has so far aided more than 2,900 council tax accounts, while the offer of a three-month holiday to tenants has resulted in 373 requests to delay rent payments.

Anyone receiving support with their rent through Universal Credit or Housing Benefit will not qualify for the rent holiday and should continue to pay their rent as normal.

Mrs Jones said the council ‘continues to buy as many goods and services locally as possible’ and all council suppliers are now being ‘paid quicker than they normally would’ to help boost their cash flow up to the end of June.

She said: “We have never known a time like this and hopefully never will again in our lifetimes.

“The £5m plan was drawn up by the council’s leadership team and cabinet and provides continuous support to help those who need it most.

“The community hub, launched last month, has provided vital support to our most vulnerable residents during this difficult time.

“Staff have also worked tirelessly to process a huge volume of calls and queries from the public in relation to accessing food, medicines and general advice and guidance.

“I’ve been hugely impressed and humbled by the strength of our residents, volunteers, local organisations and charities who have come together and provided help, care and support to those most in need.

“You have my deepest thanks and appreciation.

“Together we will get through this.”