A HELPLINE has been launched in Leeds to give support to people who are self-isolating.

Thousands of volunteers across the city have signed up to assist people who are trapped in their homes without the support of friends or family.

This week Leeds City Council launched a helpline so that anyone finding themselves in this situation can call 0113 3781877 and be matched with a local volunteer.

The council has joined forces with Voluntary Action Leeds and a network of other local charities to deliver care to anyone in need. More than 4,000 have already signed up to help, but the council says more are needed if the huge numbers now restricted from moving around are to get the support they need.

Anyone can volunteer for a range of different roles dependant on availability and preference by visiting www.doinggoodleeds.org.uk, emailing info@val.org.uk or calling 0113 2977920. Once signed-up they will receive training and be matched with opportunities locally to help. Volunteers can sign-up to offer practical support including shopping deliveries, preparing meals, dog walking or making check-in phone calls.

The council and Voluntary Action Leeds have enlisted a network of charities across all 33 wards to match volunteers with people who need help. Volunteers who have a DBS “police” check are particularly being encouraged to come forward.

Councillor Debra Coupar, Deputy Leader and Executive Member for Communities, said: “We have been moved by the city’s huge response to offer support to those in need. It is amazing to see everyone pull together during this unprecedented situation. Leeds has a strong community spirit and we are all proud to be part of this effort and of all those taking part.

“We are calling on anyone who thinks they could help even in a small way to get in touch with Voluntary Action Leeds. Whether it be dropping off food, nipping to the shops or just speaking on the telephone - we really need your help.”

Councillor Rebecca Charlwood, Executive Member for Health, Wellbeing and Adults, said: “Following the Prime Minister’s announcements we are of course concerned that all those being asked to confine themselves to their homes get the help they need. We know some of these people are alone and will need help from their local communities to get through.

“If you find yourself in this situation, wondering how to get groceries and other essentials, then I urge you to call 0113 3781877 now and we will match you with volunteers who live near you and can help.”