The National Care Force, a volunteering platform for social care set up during the coronavirus pandemic, has received a £50,000 grant from the UK government’s Innovate UK fund.
The funds will support the growth and development of the free online platform, helping the National Care Force’s mission to protect the vulnerable and elderly by connecting the UK social care system with a volunteer workforce.
With 20,000 volunteers and 2,000 care providers signed up currently, the grant will enable further platform improvements, thus allowing the National Care Force to grow as an ongoing source of support for the social care sector.
Charles Armitage, CEO of the National Care Force, said: “We’re excited and honoured to have received this show of support from Innovate UK. This grant allows us to take the National Care Force platform to the next level and to create ever stronger volunteering networks within our social care sector.”
The announcement follows a call for submissions from ambitious technologies to build UK resilience after the coronavirus outbreak.
Set up in March 2020 to create a source of volunteer help for care organisations in need, the National Care Force provides a technological solution for social care providers to find vetted volunteers across the UK.
Care organisations who join, such as care homes and home care services, are able to filter volunteers by preferred experience and skill and contact candidates to arrange volunteering opportunities.
Through this, organisations are able to get help for tasks like deliveries, running errands, admin and companionship, during a time of increased burden on permanent staff.
Doctors, nurses, care workers, support workers, physiotherapists and occupational therapists can also apply for shifts covering staff rota gaps in a variety of care settings using the app.
The National Care Force is also supported by donations from Rianta and CareTech UK.