PRGloo Ryecare

Ryecare staff preparing for Christmas after taking over 1,000 calls in 48 hours during Storm Arwen

The Ryecare team at Ryedale District Council have been praised for handling over 1,000 calls in 48 hours, in the midst of Storm Arwen.

Storm Arwen hit the UK on the 26 – 28 November 2021, causing damage to homes, disrupting travel and leaving thousands of homes without power across the north of England.

From 12pm on 27 November Ryecare operators handled over 1,000 calls in 48 hours. Over 900 calls were from Lifeline customers, who may be vulnerable people who are helped and supported to live independently in their home, and over 100 calls were to request emergency repairs as a result of the damage caused by Storm Arwen.

Operators answered every call made, either immediately or in response to messages left and all were followed up and actioned as soon as possible, with no complaints from grateful customers.

And work continues for the service as it gears up to support some of the district’s most vulnerable citizens over Christmas.

For some Ryecare customers, this time of year can be a lonely time so staff will be making calls during the festive season to make sure everyone has someone to talk to.

Around 120 customers have been identified as particularly vulnerable without anyone to share Christmas Day with.

A call from Ryecare may be the only conversation some socially-isolated people have on Christmas Day and can really make a difference to them.

The service also makes birthday calls to every customer, which can sometimes be the only birthday wishes they receive.

Margaret Wallace, Programme Director for People and Resources at Ryedale District Council, said: “Though it’s a time of year many of us look forward to, Christmas can be a very lonely time for some people.

“The response during Storm Arwen shows just what a phenomenal service our Ryecare Lifeline service deliver and this will continue through the festive period.

“Our staff are committed to helping some of our most vulnerable customers feel less alone on Christmas Day and we hope by making these calls we can put a smile on their faces and brighten their day."

Ryecare Lifeline helps people to stay safe and independent in their own home through a Ryecare Lifeline Unit which connects to their telephone and a call button worn around the neck or wrist.

They have introduced a wellbeing call service to try and fill the gap for those customers who may not see or hear anyone from one day to the next.

Ryecare can ring them at an agreed time for a chat meaning those isolated people can look forward to their daily or weekly call and catch up with Ryecare staff.

Anyone can sign up for Ryecare but it is especially helpful for those who live alone and need a bit of extra help, are unwell or disabled and who live in isolated or remote areas.

More information about Ryecare and the different support packages it can offer can be found at https://www.ryedale.gov.uk/information/ryecare-service/ or by ringing 01653 697737, this is a 24 hour phone line which will be answered at any time of the day or night.