MAKE sure you virtually check-in with your friends and family in the coming days -- that’s the message from Bracknell Forest Council as the long Easter weekend rolls around.

Making use of social media, audio and video services is being encouraged so those who need support aren’t left alone. 

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With social distancing still being advised many residents without friends or family might find it tough over the next four days. 

Those residents can turn to Bracknell Forest Community Response for help, a partnership between the council, Healthwatch and Involve which enables volunteers to deliver essential items like food and medication to those who are shielding or self-isolating.
Cllr Paul Bettison, leader of Bracknell Forest Council, said: “This Easter weekend will be unlike any other we’ve experienced, so it’s hugely important we all pull together virtually to support each other.
“The Bracknell Forest Community Response supports those who are shielding or self-isolating and do not have a network of friends or family nearby to help them with getting food or vital supplies. 

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“If you know family, friends or neighbours who may be shielding and/or having to self-isolate, please do make contact via phone or social media – just giving them a call to make sure they have enough food and medication and aren’t struggling with social isolation can make all the difference.”
To access support from Bracknell Forest Community Response, contact Healthwatch by: 
•           phone: 01344 266911 between 8am and 10pm
•           email:
The council is also supporting thousands of residents who are classed as extremely vulnerable under the Government’s shielding initiative. 

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People who have been sent a letter from the NHS or have registered with as extremely vulnerable are being called directly by the council to check how they can be individually supported over the coming weeks. 
Chris Taylor, Healthwatch Bracknell Forest, said: “The community response service will be open over the bank holiday weekend but please remember that other services such as supermarkets and pharmacies will be operating reduced opening times so some requests may take longer to fulfil than we would like.”