A new community volunteer program is helping reach out to those experiencing isolation and seclusion during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
Emily Falson, the newly minted president of the Wellington Rotary Club, is one of the volunteers helping keep in contact with the elderly and infirm and others.
She'd already been contacting neighbours and reaching out to residents she knew were struggling with the lockdown conditions before the program came into place, and leapt at the chance to be involved.
"I've actually been doing it myself as a person for a few of my neighbours, I think a lot of people have been feeling isolated with everything going on," Ms Falson said.
The arrangement became more formal when Ms Falson and others were contacted by the office of Andrew Gee, the member for Calare, who was trying to organise a community based effort to reach out to people struggling.
"Andrew had this idea that he'd contact everyone in his electorate, so they called me and said would my club be interested and I said absolutely," Ms Falson said.
"They got in touch with tons of people to see if they wanted to be part of this Calare Care Community Project, which is all about getting in contact with people."
Also joining the effort was Chris Hardy, president of the Wellington Lions Club, who was thanked along with Ms Falson for helping to organise the local, Wellington based effort.
"He asked us and we both said yes, that's something our service clubs would be interested in doing and he gave us a list of people," Ms Falson said.
Both of the group leaders recruited volunteers from within their organisations to assist in the effort, and began making phonecalls to those in need of contact.
"Fear is a big concern at the moment, I think people are frightened because of this and being inside, they only see news on television and it's very much feeding into people's fears at the moment," Ms Falson said.
"It's very frightening when you can't leave the house or talk to anyone, they might only be talking to one person a week."
"What we give them through the talks is a real person and we're allaying their fears, they know that it's not the end of the world, despite what it sometimes looks like in the media," Ms Falson said.
"We introduce ourselves and we just check in on them, see how they're doing and what they're up to, how well they're coping."
Ms Falson said it was an obligation for the community to support those who might be struggling with the current situation.
"We've got to be responsible and reach out to each other and care for each other right now."