Guide Volunteering top tips and how to help safely

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4. How can I help safely?

The single most important action we can all take, in fighting coronavirus, is to stay at home in order to protect the NHS and save lives.

When we reduce our day-to-day contact with other people, we will reduce the spread of the infection and save lives. This remains the case when you are helping others.

You should not go inside the homes of anyone you do not live with, especially vulnerable people or people who believe they may be infected and are isolating themselves. Breaking these rules could put you at risk of infection, or risk spreading it to others.

If you are picking things up or shopping for others, try to limit the amount of time you spend outside of your home by picking up essential items for them when you do your own shopping or collect their medicines during the same trip.

You should stay 2m or six feet away from anyone you do not live with at all times. Do not share a car journey with them.

You should also regularly wash your hands with soapy water for at least 20 seconds.

If you have offered to help other people, please do not place yourself in positions where you may feel unsafe, for instance helping late at night.

You must also always adhere to our advice on how to stay safe.

If you or someone in your household has shown symptoms, or if you are more vulnerable to coronavirus yourself, then you must stay home. You still play an important role but will need to do this from home.