CHARD needs your help to keep the town’s vulnerable and isolating supplied during an unprecedented national lockdown.

As the scale of the approaching COVID-19 health emergency became apparent, Chard Town Council were approached to see if they would support and facilitate the setting up of a Volunteer Support Group that would serve the town and some surrounding villages through this crisis.

The council agreed, and with the mutual support from other organisations such as Churches Together, The Lord’s Larder and the Royal British Legion a steering group was formed.

At this point, the town’s Royal British Legion branch were already hard at work and their existing volunteers and procedures were already in place.

The new support group boosts the services of the Legion and both organisations are now working closely together.

Jason Hawkes, chairman of the Chard Coronavirus Support Group, said: “The reason for setting up the group was to provide a level of organisation that went beyond the idea of supporting a neighbour.

“There is a concern that, if those people supporting their neighbours fall ill themselves, who would that vulnerable, possibly self-isolating neighbour turn to.

“We are building redundancy into that system and into our group.”

The group is operating from the Guildhall, although food referrals are being operated through the Lord’s Larder and RBL, not the town council headquarters.

Mr Hawkes added: “We offer help with shopping and running errands, delivering prescriptions, dog walking, phone buddies for those in isolation and advice on local resources.

“As the situation develops, so will we and it may be that our remit expands.”

Although the group has already amassed 160 volunteers, it is ‘urgently in need’ of more people to provide all its services.

“We are quickly getting organised, but our phone lines are very busy, so please be patient and please keep trying,” Mr Hawkes said.

If you would like to volunteer or if you know someone in need of help, call 01460 239567.

Alternatively, you can visit