The volunteer centre has been at the heart of the town’s efforts to overcome the extreme effects of the floods. More than two hundred volunteers and staff members worked together to deliver bottled water to vulnerable people. They also provided transport for those people needing medical assistance. The support was provided day and night and is still continuing.
During his visit, councillor John Rawson personally thanked the volunteers and staff for their time and effort:
You have done a sterling job of helping with water distribution to those in great need. You have helped to make sure that frail, disabled and vulnerable people are not left without drinking water. Your work has also involved long hours, taking kidney patients for dialysis in places like Birmingham and Stratford, at a time when it cannot be done in Gloucestershire because of the lack of clean mains water.
The Mayor continued:
The staff and volunteers have worked flat out right through the crisis and continue to do so. They do the job quietly and cheerfully, without asking for thanks or publicity. I can’t praise them enough for the part they have played in getting Cheltenham and its people through this difficult time.
Hazel Lonsdale, director of Cheltenham volunteer centre said:
So many positives have come from such difficulties. We have recruited over two hundred people to man water stations and undertake various other tasks in relation to the emergency. We are also working closely with community transport organisations in the county and this really has brought partnership working to life. I’m sure there are many similar stories across the county where people have joined forces to support each other in this time of need. Hopefully the links we have made will continue to add value to future work.