A councillor for Penryn has become the 3,000th person to join a volunteer army in the fight against COVID-19.

Town councillor Kurt Ruby saw Volunteer Cornwall reach the landmark figure when he added his name to the database of helpers across the county.

The charity is supporting people through the current crisis in everything from collecting groceries and prescriptions to walking dogs. It has even helped get someone to their wife's funeral and moved furniture to allow a patient to be transferred into a specialist bed at home.

Explaining why he decided to sign up to the cause, Mr Ruby said: "I just thought this was a great way to give something back to the community and help others at this difficult time.”

Andy Brelsford is the man co-ordinating the response by Volunteer Cornwall. He said: “We have been amazed and astounded by both the numbers and the enthusiasm and flexibility of the volunteers who have come forward.

"Often, we are asking them to do shopping and medication deliveries but pet walking, transportation, befriending, domestic help and care and support are all tasks that they have happily taken in their stride.”

In addition to the individual volunteers, there are more than 260 community groups providing a locally co-ordinated service in the towns and villages across Cornwall.

“From town and parish councils to individuals using social media to mobilise their local community, this is a key part of the overall service. People helping people is what it’s all about,” Andy added.

Around 1,200 people have benefitted from help and support provided by the volunteers linked to Volunteer Cornwall, with thousands more supported directly by their local Covid Support Groups.

However, Volunteer Cornwall’s plans go well beyond the end of the current Covid-19 challenge.

Andy: "Looking beyond the here and now, we're going to launch a #HarvestTheLove campaign and encourage every community to help their local farms bring in the crops, to overcome the agricultural labour shortage, and then we're going to have a huge harvest festival, in every town and village in Cornwall.

"Then at Christmas, we're going to launch our #RoomAtTheInn campaign and get everyone to lay an extra place at their table so that no-one in Cornwall spends Christmas alone.”

In the meantime, anyone wanting to become a volunteer in their community should contact their local support group or email mid@volunteercornwall.org.uk. For help email Volunteer Cornwall on requestforhelp@volunteercornwall.org.uk or call 01872 266988.