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Louis Baylis Trust donation supports Datchet Corona Volunteers

A donation from the Louis Baylis Trust is being spent on supporting a volunteer group’s dedicated telephone system and maintaining its website so people can access its services.

Datchet Corona Volunteers (DCV) received £750 from a £10,000 fund set aside by the Trust to help charities and organisations support people through the impact of the coronavirus pandemic.

David Buckley, and his wife Deborah, had the idea to set up DCV in mid-March when a lockdown seemed inevitable, starting out as a Facebook group

“It was really mainly for people who were vulnerable, elderly people who wanted to stay indoors and were a bit nervous and other people who had symptoms and were self-isolating,” he said.

“And basically it moved on from there.”

He added: “As the lockdown progressed and the Government increased the restrictions, obviously it then became more evident that this could be something that we should continue for a long period of time.”

Services provided by the 150 DCV volunteers includes helping people with shopping, urgent supplies and prescriptions, postal services and providing telephone support.

Using the money donated by the Louis Baylis Trust, David and Deborah were able to establish a dedicated telephone system for those who want to use the DCV services and to maintain the group’s website.

As well as being used to leave messages, the telephone system also gives callers the option to talk to a volunteer, seven days a week, who will either ‘deal with their request or just have a friendly chat’.

There are even funds left over from the donation to enable DCV to sustain its activities.

Through the website, DCV is also organising the preparation and home delivery of meals for healthcare, care, and emergency services workers living in Datchet, and to vulnerable families and individuals.

The meals are being prepared out of Nibbles café in Manor House Lane, Datchet, where fifty meals a week for NHS staff at Wexham Park Hospital are also being made.

These meals are donated to the Project Wingman campaign, run by a group of furloughed staff from Virgin Airlines and British Airways, who have set-up ‘hospitality lounges’ in the hospital for staff to use.

The volunteer group also hope to open a pop-up shop in the village where people can donate fruit and vegetables they have been growing, in allotments and gardens.

Find out more about DCV at datchetcoronavolunteers.co.uk or by searching for Datchet Corona Volunteers on Facebook.

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