On March 17th 2020 BIRCH Trustees made the decision to scale down the contact we have with our beneficiaries because of  the Covid-19 Coronavirus outbreak and the resultant Public Health advice.

Hosting – We are not able to take any new referrals at this time. However, we are directing enquiries to agencies who are now obliged to find accommodation for any one with NRPF (no recourse to public funds). Our existing  guests continue to remain living in their household placement. No face to face meetings between our Hosting Co ordinator and host/guests are taking place. Our staff member is in regular contact with volunteer hosts & guests. This communication is being done via email, social media, phone or text message. We have advised all households to contact us if anyone falls ill and to follow the Public Health guidance.

Family Befriending – No new matches are taking place. No face to face meetings are taking place. We are encouraging befrienders to contact young people via telephone, video messaging, social media etc.

Meet & Greet for newly arrived asylum seeking families with children – Contact and Initial Accommodation visits to beneficiaries was halted on 12th March 2020.  Our much valued volunteers are being contacted on a weekly basis to keep them informed and to make sure they are safe and well.

Please watch this space for any further information about our service provision. We will continue to follow the advice of the Public Health authorities.