Orkney Islands Council have put in place some local support measures in response to the Covid-19 pandemic.

The Orkney Coronavirus Community Support Hub has opened. It’s a call centre providing essential information and support to the most vulnerable people in Orkney. The hub is not open to the public but is staffed to answer call on 01856879900 or online via MyOrkney  seven days a week, from 9am-5pm. A dedicated email address is also available at coronavirussupporthub@orkney.gov.uk

There is a dedicated webpage on the Orkney Islands Council website that contains information that’s updated regularly for the public, businesses, third sector organisation and members of staff. www.orkney.gov.uk/covid19.

A fund to assist vulnerable people during the coronavirus pandemic has been set up. Orkney Islands  Council is working closely with Highlands and Islands Enterprise to ensure there is a co-ordinated approach to providing community support in Orkney.

The Community Resilience Fund will provide support for local voluntary, charitable and not-for-profit organisations working with:

  • People aged 70 or older and those aged under 70 with an underlying health condition, including people given the flu vaccination each year on medical grounds.
  • Those at increased risk, particularly in relation to poor mental health and wellbeing.
  • Vulnerable isolated people and families, particularly those living in remote rural areas, families where a parent or both parents have lost their employment or where children are living in poverty.
  • Children and young people – particularly on creative, digital projects to provide a voice for younger members of the community.

Hardship funding provided by the UK Government is being used to establish the fund. It initially stands at £150,000 and can awards grants of up to £2,000. This will be kept under review over the weeks ahead.

Applications can be made here 

It’s important that people stay fit and healthy within the lockdown so Orkney Islands Council’s Sport and Leisure team have organised online fitness classes – visit their Facebook page for details.

Orkney Islands Council has established an initial £5m fund to support local businesses during the coronavirus pandemic.

The fund will be set up to provide grants and loans and comes primarily from the Strategic Reserve Fund and supplemented by a mix of Crown Estate funding and the Council’s Renewable, Redevelopment and Regeneration Fund.

Grants from the fund will initially be restricted to:

  • £5,000 per applicant for businesses employing 1 to 5 full time equivalent employees.
  • £10,000 per applicant for businesses employing 6 to 10 full time equivalent employees.
  • £15,000 per applicant for businesses employing 11 or more full time equivalent employees

Details of the cash flow loan scheme are being worked on and will be made available in due course.

Applications to the fund will be administered by the Economic Development Service through Business Gateway, with the grants aimed specifically at businesses that are currently ineligible for Government assistance schemes such as the Government Coronavirus Business Support grant.

Further details of support available locally is available on the Council website.

(Update provided by Orkney Islands Council)