Churches launch Covid-19 helpline to offer support and practical help

By agency reporter
April 13, 2020

Churches are offering their service to the nation at Easter weekend and throughout the COVID-19 crisis. Over 1000 churches from across 40 denominations in the UK have joined the YourNeighbour.org network, as part of the YourNeighbour.org national call centre, which launched on Easter Sunday, offering their support to people who need help across the country.

YourNeighbour.org matches registered churches with people in need, enabling them to help with food shopping, providing food to the hungry and trips to the pharmacy and any other needs the person has. 

Prior to the launch of the helpline, hundreds of church leaders signed the following pledge:

Our nation is suffering. This crisis is causing hardship for many millions of individuals and families across the UK. Daily life is out of balance. 

This is an unusual Easter. Our church buildings, in normal years full of people celebrating the highlight of the Christian calendar, will be empty, and worshippers will celebrate at home. But while our celebrations may look different, our message remains the same. At Easter we remember the death of Jesus Christ and celebrate the life-giving hope of His resurrection. Since the very first Easter, Christ’s followers have been beacons of hope.

In the last weeks, millions of people across the UK have participated in online church services and more will take part this weekend. Churches have been providing food and essentials, caring for the isolated and the lonely, and offering counselling and practical support for those in need. While our buildings may be closed, our churches are open for business. 

This is our pledge as church leaders across the UK. We are committed to playing our role, alongside other groups, institutions and organisations, to bring much needed hope to our communities.

For those who need help with food, medicine and essential supplies, or simply want someone to talk to on the phone or online:

We are here for you.

For those struggling with anxiety and bereavement or who need help and advice on finance, employment or other challenging issues:

We are here for you.

For those working on the frontline, fighting COVID-19 and sustaining our essential public services:

We are here for you.

For those serving in national or local government who are looking for organisations that can lend their staff, volunteers, buildings and assets to support our national effort to beat this disease:

We are here for you.

Whatever the future holds, churches in the UK stand ready, willing and able to serve. We are praying for our country and our communities, and committed to caring for our neighbours in days and years to come.

May the hope of Easter be with us all.

The YourNeighbour.org call centre, staffed by a team of experts, is open 9am-5pm, seven days a week. Call 0300 323 9952

Alternatively you can email: 

* Churches can sign the pledge here

* YourNeighbour https://yourneighbour.org/

[Ekk/6]

Although the views expressed in this article do not necessarily represent the views of Ekklesia, the article may reflect Ekklesia's values. If you use Ekklesia's news briefings please consider making a donation to sponsor Ekklesia's work here.