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Now that the World Health Organisation has declared a pandemic and the Government has moved into the delay phase of managing coronavirus in the UK, Cornwall Care has been busy planning for potential staff shortages in the weeks and months to come. The organisation has 1400 employees and runs sixteen care homes across the county. It also provides domiciliary care and other vital support for vulnerable people.

Yesterday, Cornwall Care CEO Anne Thomas asked all those who work in the charity’s administrative services – including learning and development, human resources, payroll, finance and maintenance – if they would be prepared to stop doing their day job so they could help out doing shifts in frontline services should the need arise. The response was overwhelming.

“The generosity was amazing and I honestly couldn’t be more proud,” said Anne. “I was asking people about the possibility of working evenings, nights and weekends and was constantly being told: I’ll go anywhere and do anything, just let me know what you need.”

People volunteering for the extra duties were asked to sign sheets indicating which roles they would be happy to take on if required and where they would prefer to be based. Cornwall Care runs its own training and additional sessions are being held next week to ensure all staff are fully equipped to help out in the event of a worsening situation.

“Whilst there are currently no staff shortages, this is an emergency and, as a community, Cornwall Care is pulling together to ensure the people we are looking after are as safe as they possibly can be,” said Anne. “Their willingness to help in whatever way they can is a fantastic testament to their dedication and commitment.”