A Darlington charity that supports disabled people has found new ways to help through lockdown.
Like many groups, Darlington Association on Disability had to stop their usual services when lockdown began.
But they knew disabled people were counting on them.
So they applied for a £5,000 grant from County Durham Community Foundation.
Darlington charity make a difference
Lauren Robinson from the Darlington charity said: “Everyone who is being contacted is appreciating our support and demand is growing. People who were coping in the first few weeks are now beginning to struggle. ”
Lauren estimates that approximately 5% of people they work with are at risk of harm. Harm that can come through a lack of support or a decline in mental health.
And a fifth need ongoing support to make sure they do not become critically ill.
Support for disabled people in Darlington
The DAD team have split into two, and are currently supporting 46 people each week.
Jane* lives alone and is usually very active. She has a mental health condition and is finding the current situation very difficult.
DAD are supporting Jane with daily well-being calls. They remind her about social distancing, and encourage her to think about tasks she can do around the house.
Jane is now baking, doing quizzes and planning a decorating project. She appreciates the reminders about Government guidance as this helps her stay safe. Jane is confident now to go out for a daily walk or jog.
Jane describes calls from DAD as: “Marvellous: the chats are helping my mental health and I look forward to these chats because I know someone cares.”
*names have been changed