Buxton Street by Street… the journey so far:
After setting up the Buxton Street by Street COVID-19 Support group up on Facebook on March 16th, Anna was quickly joined by Claire and Caitlin who have been instrumental in building it into what it has become. Notable successes to date have been after inviting just 100 friends to the Facebook group, there are now nearly 2,400 members; there have been 1.7k posts, we have 200 volunteers performing a multitude of tasks, including supporting their neighbours with shopping and telephone companionship to every house on all 307 streets in Buxton; a daily emergency food parcel delivery scheme which has so far distributed 200+ bags of groceries to 150 Buxton households who need them the most.
This incredible achievement has been made possible with Caitlin’s networking and organisational skills and the most formidable team of volunteer delivery personnel including Richard, Steve, Mel, Barry, Kevin, Steve (who travels in from Chelmorton) and Emma, after food has been collected early in the morning from Aldi by Carmel, Stacey (from Zinc’s High Peak Food Bank) and Maddison.
Behind the scenes
Behind the scenes, we have a team of hard-working administrators who process volunteer information and requests for help, most notably Jane and Moira. Rich Graham of Buxton Website Design keeps us all on-track with the website he built www.buxtonstreetbystreet.co.uk to ensure it offers the most valuable information and up-to-date resource hub, complimenting our Facebook group news feed. We were recently joined by Kim who has been a highly valued member of our website team and brings with her vast experience of building organisations after she identified a need for a service which wasn’t yet there. Claire’s skills in IT, contacts within the community, diligence and determination to grow this initiative into one which was recently referred to by a Community Voluntary Service (CVS) manager as a ‘model of best practice’ and ‘one that will inspire others’ has seen her working through the night to ensure every road has at least one volunteer and every volunteer is provided with safe practice guidance and the support that they need to meet the needs of their vulnerable neighbours.
Buxton Street by Street has attracted the attention of the local press and radio championed by Jen Francis of Explore Buxton, our profile has been raised far and wide enough to ensure that even people living in other countries who have relatives in Buxton they are worried about, have been able to contact one of us to request help for them. Indeed, we have been approached by residents of local towns and villages asking whether we could increase our boundaries to include them. We are now supporting residents in Cowdale, Chelmorton and Peak Dale because of Jen’s keen eye for a good story and Rich’s responsive and professionalism in the face of the the many twists and turns this initiative has been characterised by from the get-go!