COVID-19: updates on the Stripey Stork service

This page has been set up as a central information point for all of our stakeholders. This is where we will keep everyone informed as news progresses and we respond accordingly to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Please be assured that we are monitoring the situation extremely closely and are working hard to maintain as normal a service as possible within any boundaries which are set. Getting help to where it is needed most, especially at times of crisis, remains our top priority. Thank you for working with us to make this possible.

Please read the updates below…

Additional families helped during COVID-19

Operational updates

Following the government advice we have had to make some changes to how our service works for each of the groups below. This is subject to change as the situation evolves.

  • Due to staff availability and safety, the warehouse opening days/hours have been reduced until further notice. The specific days may change weekly so please keep checking back here for updates. 
  • W/c 8th June: we will be open Monday, Wednesday and Thursday mornings 9am-11:30am, for pre-scheduled collections only. Please note, throughout June there will be planned roadworks with temporary traffic lights on Yorke Road. Please either avoid this route or allow extra time to arrive for your collection. Thank you!
  • Due to the limitations of this reduced service, we are encouraging bulk stock requests such as nappies, toiletries, books, stationery and popular clothes items. This means you will be able to keep a stockpile in your office so you can respond quickly to individual requests for help. Please note, this is of course subject to stock availability. 
  • All collections need to be pre-scheduled, with no walk-in requests please – email to make a referral and arrange collection.
  • If you feel unwell, please stay at home until you are fully recovered and have followed current government protocol. If you’ve been to an affected area, or been in contact with someone affected, please follow the recommended advice. This is a useful website regarding NHS recommendations on health and travel.
  • To reduce contact risk, the door will be kept locked and all visitors will need to ring the bell on arrival.
  • Referral packages will already be prepared and we’ll use the trolley to transport them to your cars.
  • Check this web page before leaving to pick up a scheduled collection, in case of any last minute changes.

We are kindly asking volunteers NOT to visit the warehouse for the time being as we cannot justify this as essential travel. This is with the exception of a few of our experienced volunteers who have been helping us to make up emergency packs. All corporate team sessions have also been cancelled until further notice.

Regular volunteers can email Charlotte on if they’d like to be rostered onto a session if we do need urgent help, but for now the core team will take responsibility for responding to requests for help.

At present, we are NOT taking any physical donations, and we kindly ask that you do not visit the warehouse with any items. 

We will use the below means of helping to purchase items which we don’t have in stock or need to buy more of.  

How we are getting help to where it's needed most!

Our service is needed more than ever, and our supported families will continue to feel the effects of COVID-19 long after lockdown. Thanks to our amazing team, referral partners, community of supporters and funders, we’ve been able to continue our (streamlined) service and are so proud of what we’ve achieved:

  • We’ve been able to help many more additional families (see above for the latest figure) with essential supplies such as nappies, toiletries and stationery, going out via bulk requests from our referral partners.
  • We’ve been continuing to meet individual family requests for help at the high level we were experiencing before lockdown, despite running a skeleton service of reduced staff/days/hours.
  • Numerous funding applications for eligible COVID-19 grants have been made with a high success rate so far. This, as well as the funds from our COVID-19 Appeal and generous donations from our partners, is ensuring we can continue to meet the needs of the most vulnerable families in our local community and hopefully weather this storm.
  • Since being closed for physical donations, our team/volunteers have been working hard to source items which are running low on our shelves. Bulk discounts and best prices have been negotiated wherever possible to make funds go even further. We have now built up a good supply network which has meant we have yet to run out of an essential item.
  • We’ve been working alongside local councils and other voluntary organisations, as part of their response to the pandemic. We’re finding that the relationships we’ve built over the years are proving to be most beneficial, as everyone works together for the greater good.

How can I help?

Even though we are unable to accept physical donations at present, any help to replenish essential items is gratefully received.

As the COVID-19 crisis escalates, we need to ensure we have a reserve of funds so we are able to purchase essential items when needed. We will use our network of referral partners to ensure they are well-stocked with such items so they can respond quickly to the families on their caseloads.

This is the best way to help right now, as we have the contacts and processes already in place to respond to help where it’s needed most. If you are feeling helpless and want to do something tangible, then please consider making a donation here.

Another way to help is to make a purchase from our Amazon wish list – this is kept regularly updated with items we need at any given time such as essential toiletries, nappies, wipes, stationery and craft items. It’s hassle-free as orders are delivered directly to us – please select ‘Nicola Dawes/Stripey Stork’ as the delivery address.

Want to do more?

It’s times of crisis when we see the most wonderful acts of kindness in our community. Here’s some links to other local organisations/resources if you want to do even more:

  • Loveworks – local food bank. They are expecting a massive surge in requests from those who will struggle with an extended school break and food stock levels if self-isolating.
  • Reigate & Banstead Borough Council Coronavirus News – regularly updated information on volunteer coordination and support services available in the Borough. 
  • Surrey County Council Coronavirus Website – county-wide practical help and advice.
  • VARB (Voluntary Action Reigate & Banstead) – working closely with the local council in registering volunteers to assist organisations across the Borough in the coming few weeks/months. 
  • Reigate & Redhill Covid19 Mutual Aid and Earlswood Covid19 Mutual Aid – community Facebook groups set up to bring together those who can help and those who may need help locally.
  • NHS Volunteer Responders – the Government has issued an urgent call for people to register as a volunteer for the NHS to help tackle the coronavirus crisis, details on signing up in the link.

Stripey's family hub

Take a look at our dedicated page, full of ideas to keep the kids entertained during this time, with some kindness suggestions thrown in. Getting by with a little help from Stripey…