Scottish Community Development Centre (SCDC) is working closely with the Scottish Government and NHS nationally in offering assistance to community organisations and local partnerships to make what contributions they can to the COVID-19 crisis.

The grassroots community response that has sprung up has reinforced the vital role community groups and community-led approaches have in supporting diverse communities across Scotland. At the same time, the pandemic will have profound impacts beyond our immediate health, and we are concerned that the long-term economic cost will disproportionately impact people living in our most vulnerable communities along with organisations and groups that support them.

A priority area of work is therefore supporting the targeting of Scottish Government funds to appropriate community networks and groups. Our Community Health Exchange (CHEX) programme, with its network of over 150 community-led health organisations, many working in and with our most disadvantaged communities, has been particularly useful in this regard.

Alongside this, we have been surveying our network about Covid-19’s impact on community groups and communities which has helped shape our digital support for community groups as well as the resources and good practice we are sharing on our website for community groups, Communities Channel Scotland.

Other important work includes: helping to develop the best scientific advice for communities on how to make sure they don’t accidentally spread the virus when delivering food, medicines etc; ensuring community networks and more formal emergency responses are connected to work practically together; and supporting local partnerships work together and sharing their  learning with others planning support during the crisis.

Over the coming weeks we’ll be continuing these conversations with various local and national partners in addition to developing our package of support and resources.

(Update provided by SCDC)