An update on our face-to-face services

28 January 2022
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Last updated: 28 January 2022

The rollout of the coronavirus (COVID-19) vaccine may have given us greater optimism for the new year, but there’s no doubt that times are still tough.

Versus Arthritis puts the health and safety and wellbeing of all its people – our community, employees, supporters, and volunteers - at the heart of its decision making.

As we begin to resume some of our face to face services across England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland, our priority is to keep everyone safe and have set out some guidelines to help with this. 

Keeping everyone safe at our face-to-face services

We know how much our groups and other face-to-face services mean to you and we’d like to continue to support you as much as we possibly can.

We know that the virus continues to represent a clear risk to the health of our most vulnerable beneficiaries and even those who are not immune suppressed.  

To make sure our services can start up again safely, we're continuing to recommend that social distancing guidelines are in place at all services across England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland. 

This will include wearing face masks, remaining two metres apart at all times, meeting outdoors or in well ventilated spaces and keeping the number of people to a safe number. 

We also recommend that people take a lateral flow test before attending our events or residentials. If you do test positive, we ask you to not attend our events so we can work together to keep everyone safe. 

Whatever is right for you, we're here for you

We understand that some people will not be able to, or not feel comfortable returning to our face to face meetings and events. Whatever is right for you, we're still here.

We will still be offering online services for those who would like to participate in this way.

We’ve updated our coronavirus information including our vaccine information.

If you’d like to talk to someone, have concerns or want to hear from others with arthritis, our online community, Facebook and Twitter communities are available 24/7 making sure you’re never alone.

COVA, our COVID-19 virtual assistant can help you find the information you need and our free helpline is open Monday—Friday, 9am—6pm.

What does this mean if I am a volunteer?

We would really appreciate your help in spreading this message throughout our network and please do all you can to support our local services as we resume face to face services. 

Any reasonable expenses incurred contacting people with arthritis in your volunteer role, including telephone calls, will be reimbursed through our volunteer expenses process (please keep records/bills).

We know how incredibly resilient and creative our volunteers can be and we've been so proud of the support we've been able to provide together during the pandemic such as telephone calls, online group meetings and webinars. 

If you’re able to support us in our efforts to continue to support those impacted by arthritis during this time, please get in touch with your usual Versus Arthritis contacts or via volunteering@versusarthritis.org.

What if I need support right now?

Please get in touch with your usual contact or reach out to our helpline or online community. We’re here.