Coronavirus Info

We know that many people are watching the unfolding situation with coronavirus and COVID-19 and are concerned about the impact the virus and illness might have in Bristol and Knowle West.

The team behind the Knowledge, knowlewest.co.uk and Knowle West Alliance want to make sure we provide access to accurate online information, and do what we can to ensure that no one in Knowle West feels isolated, scared or unsupported during this changing time.

The situation is rapidly evolving and the websites below are often updated on a daily basis, but we hope the information will be a helpful starting point for you.

The Knowle West Alliance Facebook page will be posting regular updates.

Health Advice

“COVID-19 is a new illness that can affect your lungs and airways. It’s caused by a virus called coronavirus.”
(NHS website)

The NHS website explains:

  • the symptoms of coronavirus
  • ‘dos’ and ‘don’ts’ for everyone to help slow the spread of the virus
  • groups that are particularly at risk
  • ‘stay at home’ guidance for people with confirmed or possible coronavirus (COVID-19) infection – sometimes referred to as ‘self isolation’

If you have symptoms of coronavirus and have isolated yourself at home, and you need medical advice, you can use the online NHS coronavirus 111 service. If you can’t get the help you need via this website, you can call 111.

Government Response

The GOV.UK website outlines how the UK government is responding the developing situation. It also contains links to other websites and statistics about the number of coronavirus cases in the UK.

Foreign Travel

The Foreign & Commonwealth Office (FCO) website contains guidance for British people travelling and living overseas.

You can use the Travel Advice part of the site to view guidance for each country, including whether the FCO advises against travel there at the moment.

Employees, Businesses & Benefits

If you are concerned about the impact that the coronavirus could have on your job, business or benefits, you can visit the GOV.UK website. It contains information about:

  • Changes to Job Centre appointments
  • Those already claiming support
  • Those who need to make a new claim for financial support
  • Employees and self-employed people, such as Sick Pay
  • Businesses, such as business support

Schools

Bristol City Council’s website has a section providing information about the status of city schools and whether they are open, closed, or operating a partial closure.

Public Transport

Due to the coronavirus outbreak there may be some changes and disruption to public transport services. Up to date information from local transport providers can be found by following the links below.

Mental Health Support

If concerns or worries about coronavirus are having a negative effect on your mental health, there is advice available online from charities and organisations that specialise in supporting people’s health and wellbeing.

Helping Others

If you are well and able to offer support to people in Knowle West who are self-isolating, there are a number of things you can do.

Mayor Marvin Rees is encouraging people to sign up to the Can Do Bristol website and register their interest in supporting the city’s response to the coronavirus outbreak. Can Do Bristol is a platform that’s been designed to “bring people, groups and organisations together to create positive change in their communities.”

The Knowle West Alliance has prepared the template of a neighbourhood letter that you can share with your immediate neighbours (e.g. people in the surrounding houses), providing your contact details and a list of things you are happy to do for them – from having a friendly chat on the phone to help people feel less lonely to collecting shopping and dropping it off.

You will be able to download it here. You can also pick up copies from the following organisations while they are open to the public:

Copies may be available at local shops too – why not ask when collecting your supplies?

Helping Safely

If you are helping others, please take precautions to protect yourself from catching or spreading coronavirus:

  • Follow the NHS ‘dos’ and ‘don’ts’
  • Wash your hands regularly for at least 20 seconds
  • Practice ‘social distancing’ – such as maintaining a distance of around 2 metres from others
  • Leave shopping or food packages on the doorstep – knock or notify the person who is self-isolating that you’ve brought them, but leave before they open the door

Bristol City Council has provided guidance on considering safeguarding risks when you’re helping others, which includes:

  • show identification to prove who you are or where you live
  • never ask for personal details or bank details
  • encourage older relatives or neighbours not to give their personal details to anyone

Please make sure you respect and protect the privacy of anyone you help – especially people who might be vulnerable, such as those who live alone or older people. For example, please don’t share anyone’s personal details (such as their name, address or the things they need help with) with others or post it on social media. Even though many people may want to help, there may be others who could take advantage of knowing this information.

The Council website also includes a link to fill in an online safeguarding referral form if you’re worried about someone who might be vulnerable at this time.

If you give out the Knowle West Alliance neighbourhood letters, be mindful of the fact that you will be giving your phone number out to people you may not know.

The Council guidance also has recommendations for anyone receiving help:

  • if someone offers to help you, make sure you know and trust them
  • never give them money, your bank details or any other personal details

Avoiding Scams

We have been alerted to a number of scams relating to coronavirus:

  • On 24 March, the Department for Education’s official Twitter account shared details of a scam that is currently circulating. Scammers have been e-mailing parents: ‘As schools will be closing, if you’re entitled to free school meals, please send your bank details and we’ll make sure you’re supported’. The Department for Education have confirmed that this is a false email and is asking people: ‘do not respond, and delete immediately.’
  • People have received scam text messages directing them to a site called UK-Covid-19-Relieve with a promise of a payment of £258. This is not a genuine website. As we’ve highlighted elsewhere on this page, the UK government website is www.gov.uk/

There are several websites offering articles and guidance online that can help you in identifying scams and fraud online:

  • Action Fraud, the National Fraud & Cyber Crime Reporting Centre
  • Which? – the consumer body for testing goods and services