COVID-19 advice for voluntary and community sector organisations

A new national lockdown: Stay at Home was announced by the Prime Minister on 4th January. Full guidance on what you can and cannot do can be found here

We are constantly reviewing our guidance in the light of local and national announcements; as we learn more or should the situation change, we will update our information pages. 

What is COVID-19?

Covid-19 is the name for what we have to come to know as coronavirus. Coronaviruses are a group of viruses common across the world and COVID-19 is a new strain first identified in Wuhan in China in January this year. 

Typical symptons include fever and a cough that may progress to a severe pneumonia causing shortness of breath and breathing difficulties. Generally, coronavirus can cause more severe symptons in people with weakened immune systems, older people, and those with long-term conditions like diabetes, cancer and chronic lung disease. 

The following symptons may develop in the 14 days after exposure to someone who has the COVID-19 infection:

Durham County Council Coronavirus Advice and Information (updated 04/01/21)

Durham County Council's response to the latest coronavirus restrictions can be found here

For the latest news and information on coronavirus from Durham County Council, please visit their website here

Details of COVID-19 Support Grants for Businesses can be found here

Durham Community Action Guides

National Lockdown Restrictions January 2021 - Guidance for Community Buildings (updated 11/01/21)

Energy Efficiency Top Tips for Community Buildings

Blog: National Lockdown - Stay at Home Guidance (updated 05/01/21)

Covid-19 Advice for Volunteers (updated 13/01/21)

Covid-19 Good Practice Guide for Volunteer Involving Organisations  (updated 13/01/21)

Resilience and Sustainability Funding Guide (updated 15/12/20)

Data Protection and Volunteer Groups - Advice from The Information Commissioners Office

Sources of Information


Action with Communities in Rural England (ACRE)

Information for community buildings and groups

Charity Commission

Regularly updated guidance to help with running your charity during the Coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak.


Information to help you decide what steps you and your organisation may need to take in light of the spread of the virus. 


Coronavirus News

Press releases in relation to the Coronavirus outbreak including closures and event cancellations

Business Durham

Business Durham, the economic arm of Durham County Council, has guidance for employers and businesses about COVID-19. 


NHS website

The NHS website has more information about how coronavirus is spread and answers common questions about the virus. 


UK Government Guidance 

This includes guidance and support plus details of any recent or upcoming changes.

Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme

Guidance from the Government on how to claim for your employees' wages through the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme. 

Enabling Safe and Effective Volunteering during COVID-19

Guidance from the Government to help organisations and groups understand how to safely and effectively involve volunteers durung the pandemic.