Berkhamsted launches online hub to support local community

Berkhamsted has been chosen as one of the first towns to launch Grapevine Local, an online hub to support and celebrate the local community.

Wednesday, 10th June 2020, 9:36 am

The founders are asking for help to make the free online hub the place that people can go to for everything that makes Berkhamsted the best place to work, live and play - www.grapevinelocal.co.uk.

Alan Greaney, Founder, said: “Community has never been more important, more relevant and more life-affirming than right now.

"It is into this environment that we are so pleased to launch Grapevine Local, a project that has been two years in the making.

Grapevine Local

"We want to help you to make a difference in your community.

"And the exciting part of the launch is that now it’s time to hand over to you, because it’s the people in Berkhamsted that will turn it from a website into a vital part of the community in which you live.”

The online hub is not just about celebrating everything that Berkhamsted stands for. It also has a more important task.

Loneliness, isolation and mental health are themes which have been explored over the past few years, most notably by Age UK which recognises that older people are most at risk, with almost one million people over the age of 75 not knowing their nearest neighbours.

Grapevine Local

But each group in society faces their own challenges, whether that’s social isolation, frantic busy lives, or a lack of information on where to find the help they need from their community.

It is into this environment that Grapevine Local is to launch with an overarching objective to connect the people that want to be connected.

Kind residents in Berkhamsted pulled together to raise enough money to replace a bike for an ITU nurse, Rachael Delderfield, who finished her 12 hour shift to find it stolen.

South East Crafts Causes, a craft group based in the town, has made over 100 scrub sets and over 2,000 bags for healthcare workers during the pandemic.

And volunteers from the Berkhamsted Covid 19 Mutual Aid group have taken it in turns to act as telephone friends for socially isolated people in the community.

Grapevine Local aims to build on this sense of collegiate kindness and act as a portal for information gathering and sharing.

There are a number of other exciting community initiatives in the pipeline, which include photography projects, history challenges and celebrations of local people, pets and places.

Grapevine Local is a website that allows you to buy and sell services and products, support those that need extra help and celebrate the best of the town.

It has been designed to be relevant and to give you the information you want to find.

The founders are hoping that local people will step up to help test, launch and enjoy it, to ensure that it matches the needs and expectations of the Berkhamsted community it has been designed to serve.

If you’d like to become a local leader and be part of the testing phase, then please email [email protected]

Everyone in Berkhamsted is invited to get involved.

As part of the launch, Grapevine Local would like to ask local people two questions. Given what we have experienced over the last couple of months:

- What would you like to remain the same?

- What would like to change?

Email your answers to: [email protected] and we’ll share them with the community.