COVID-19 affected the vulnerable and isolated in our communities more than most. It also revealed that there’s a desire within communities to do more for our neighbours-in-need.
Proving that a crisis can also be an opportunity, Gather my Crew, an online support tool previously used to help rally friends and family for a loved one in need, has been adapted to fill the current gaps in traditional community support. ‘Connect with Gather my Crew’ has launched with the promise to ‘Turn Good Will into Good Deeds’.
It’s aim is to connect people within a community who are motivated to help with vulnerable people in their neighbourhood who need something current community services can’t provide – whether it’s help in the garden, a meal, or someone to sit with for a cup of tea and a chat.
Connect with Gather My Crew uses purpose-built technology to enable local neighbourhoods to come together to create ‘support crews” that can be mobilised to look after neighbours in need in a safe and sustainable way.
The technology is simple to use and, unlike more structured forms of volunteering, gives those willing to lend a hand the choice of when and how they help out.
Connect with Gather My Crew is a grass-roots led solution that also provides community members with the training, insurance, safety checks and support they need to make the local impact they desire.
How it works
‘Crew leads’ register a support crew
Local community groups can register and manage a ‘support crew’ for their local area. The person who sets up the crew (Crew Lead) must undergo an interview and police check. Once approved, the Crew Lead can invite other local residents to join in and help out.
‘Referrers’ identify people in need
Professionals working with those in need (GP, aged care, maternal health, social worker) can Refer clients to Connect. A Referrer can search the Support Crew directory to find local crews who can lend their client a hand. The Referrer simply connects the client (with their consent) to the Support Crew via the website.
‘Crew members’ lend a hand
Anyone who wants to lend a hand in their community can join a Support Crew. Crew Members are notified when people in their area need something done. There are no set shifts or lock in commitments, you only commit to the tasks you are able to do. Safety and Security Gather My Crew provides all training, technology, safety checks, interviews, insurance and codes of conduct.
To learn more please visit the Gather my Crew website – www.gathermycrew.org.au
Connect with Gather My Crew has been funded by the Victorian State Government – Let’s Stay Connected Fund which is run by the Department of Jobs, Precincts and Regions
To get to this stage Connect with Gather My Crew has had support from a range of partners:
- State Government of Victoria, Lord Mayor’s Charitable Foundation and the Gandel Philanthropy; • Delivery partners: Greater Shepparton City Council, Bayside Council and Yarra Ranges Council.
Project development partners:
- Volunteering Victoria, Greater Shepparton Lighthouse Project, Barwon Palliative Care, Justice Connect and the Red Cross.