Support for vulnerable people
What sorts of scams target the elderly, and what can seniors do to avoid these scams?
A number of factors contribute to elderly people’s susceptibility to certain types of fraud, including social isolation, good credit and lots of money and lack of cybersecurity awareness. Sixty and Me takes a deep dive into 10+ common scams including ways to avoid them. Read here
Edition 27 – Wednesday 30 September
A veritable smorgasbord of delights from The Princess Royal Trust for Carers in Hampshire
Baking at home Virtual Session with Clair’s Cakes
Sign up for this unique cake baking session. They will deliver the cake ingredients to you the day before the session and then you can make them with Clair the next day following her very simple instructions online.
Thursday 22 October, 10.30
Museum at Home Virtual Session with the Army Flying Museum
Explore and discover stories of bravery, courage and innovation, see some of the unusual and quirky items within the Army Flying Museum and find out how Army flying has changed over the past 150 years.
Wednesday 14 October, 11:00
Live Zoom Sing-along with Maddison Douch
Every Friday at 10.30
If you would like to join in or find out more, please call 01264 835246 or email here
New way for professionals and the public to contact HCC Adults’ Health and Care
There is a new way for professionals and members of the public to contact HCC’s Adult Health and Care department online. They have launched a single multifunctional contact form for everyone which will replace all other current contact forms and our email address.
The key changes they have made are:
- Being able to report safeguarding alerts via the online form
- Removal of the requirement to log on to make a referral
- Smart forms which will mean you only need to answer relevant questions.
- The option to choose your preferred method of contact including “for information only”
The Wright Care
The Wright Care offers a unique service to anyone who is struggling in our communities to get shopping, to have a friend to call, help with looking at utility bills and speaking to authorities if they have home issues such as a leak, heating problems or telecommunication problems.
The Wright Care will look after your loved one every week, help them or control their weekly shopping supplies-setting them up with local supermarket/supply chains to keep them independent or take control if they do not have the ability or technology to go on line themselves.
They will be their point of call, a friend on the other end of the phone whenever they need us to have a chat, go through dietary needs, we will check to make sure nothing is worrying them and find a solution to help if there is. We can help to arrange transport for medical/veterinary appointments, prescriptions delivered but overall give the assurance that someone is looking after them.
See, Hear, Respond
This new partnership from Barnardo’s is funded by the Department for Education and has been created to help children and young people experiencing harm and increased adversity during Covid-19 by providing support to those who are not being seen by schools or other key agencies. The aim is to provide early intervention before children reach the threshold for statutory intervention.
Help is available via:
- an online hub of support and information
- online counselling and therapy
- face-to-face support for those most affected and at risk of some of today’s most pertinent issues, such as criminal exploitation, helping children and young people reintegrate back into school.
There is no minimum threshold for referral. For more information please see the front page of the Barnardo’s website
Youth Commission Film – Fractured
Make sure you check out this new short film; written, acted and directed by young people including Amelia, our Youth Commissioner, from the Hampshire & Isle of Wight Youth Commission and Hampshire CAMHS.
The film raises awareness of unhealthy relationships. It focuses on LGBT+ relationships and coercion and control. Produced is by Strong Media as part of the ICE project run by Hampshire Cultural Trust and Hampshire CAHMS.
The film is available on the Hampshire PCC’s you tube channel
Edition 25 – Wednesday 16 September
Mini Happy Kit
A new mini (A6 size) mental health toolkit covering key information, facts and tips on 14 wellbeing topics is now available for young people! The wellbeing topics cover:
• Affirmations • Anger management • Anxiety • Bereavement • Depression • Food and mood • Gratitude • Panic attacks • Positive thinking • Sleep • Self care • Self harm • Stress • Top 10 Happy Tips
Contact details website / email / 07703 670 654
How Are You Today?
Rushmoor Healthy Living launched a new project ‘RHL How Are You Today’, focused on working age people in Rushmoor, Hart and East Hants with long term health conditions and disabilities.
Funded by Hampshire County Council, the group is for people with all kinds of long term health conditions or disabilities: they have attendees with everything from MS, Thyroid problems, Asthma and Epilepsy to Parkinsons & Depression. Unlike many support groups they have chosen to have a mix of conditions and focus on peer support and helping people to be positive and live as much of a ‘normal’ life as possible.
Despite only launching a couple of weeks ago they already have over 30 members, a Facebook Group where members discuss ideas and share tips, as well as monthly Zoom Sessions, with guest speakers and chat time! They’ll also be sharing recipes for quick and easy meals for when days are really tough and Exercise videos including Seated Exercise. Our guest speakers will be focusing on issues that members have identified as causing difficulties in their lives, Building Confidence, Tips for Coping with Fatigue, Improving Memory etc.
If you know of someone who may be interested please pass on the details!
For more information please contact Rachael Austen-Jones
The Garden Coach
Eddie Morgan is dedicated to helping new gardeners enjoy the delights of gardening, and sharing the knowledge skills and dedication that he has accumulated in a lifetime of gardening.
Sundays at Stanmore – every other Sunday, budding gardeners meet at Kingsley Place allotment to learn all about allotmenteering, while working together with like minded people.
Gardening by Facebook, to assist new and community gardeners. Eddie.Morgan.thegardencoach
Gardening by phone – a course of five video calls carried out over 40 days, where you “walk” around your garden and Eddie offers advice and practical know-how.
Email or 01962 791196
Every Mind Matters
Public Health England’s new campaign, Better Health – Every Mind Matters, is designed to support children and young people’s mental wellbeing as they return to school.
Aimed at parents, carers, teachers and young people, the campaign provides NHS-endorsed tips and advice to support mental wellbeing and equip parents and carers with the knowledge to support them.
Gap between rich and poor pupils in England ‘grows by 46% in a year’
Urgent support must be targeted at disadvantaged pupils and schools in areas of high deprivation, researchers have said, as figures reveal the gap in England between some pupils and their wealthier peers widened by 46% in the school year severely disrupted by the Covid-19 lockdown.
New way for professionals and the public to contact HCC Adults’ Health and Care
There is now a new way for professionals and members of the public to contact HCC’s Adult Health and Care department online. They have launched a single multifunctional contact form for everyone which will replace all other current contact forms and our email address. The key changes they have made are:
• Being able to report safeguarding alerts via the online form
• Removal of the requirement to log on to make a referral
• Smart forms which will mean you only need to answer relevant questions.
• The option to choose your preferred method of contact including “for information only”
Edition 23 – Wednesday 2 September
Open Sight have produced a short video calling for all children to have a mandatory pre-school eye test. Please share the link with family and friends and encourage Mums and Dads to take their children for an eye test.
- Online cooking classes via Zoom are starting on Wednesday 2nd September
- Come along and learn how to cook and make a delicious meal with your family!
Green Therapy from Inspero
Contribute to a local community garden project helping to grow organic food- this FREE gardening class is a lovely social group
Attendees of the class have expressed various benefits such as reduced stress levels, helps ease depression and increase well-being as well as improved self-esteem and forming new friendships whilst learning new skills
Join us every Friday between 10am-2pm at our Kempshott Community Garden, Pack Lane, Basingstoke, RG22 6NS
Community Shop and Food Hub
Inspero’s new community shop and Food Hub is now at Kempshott Village Hall, Pack Lane, RG22 5HN.
The shop will contain a range of foods, both fresh and ambient food, basic hygiene items and other products. It will open on a Tuesday & Thursday between 12-1 (in the community room around the side of the building by the new patio area). Everyone is welcome to come and pick what foods and other items they need in exchange for a donation.
If you need support during this difficult time, please come and have a look, there will be plenty of different types of food including fruit, veg and Greggs bakery items. If you can afford to donate food items, please come and have a chat with us. During this pandemic Inspero would like to ensure that local people are supported as best as possible.
[The lovely Catherine who founded Inspero was one of the first social entrepreneurs on our School for Social Entrepreneurs programme. So everything she does is brilliant and amazing and fantastic! I’m not at all biased you understand]
County Council adds £1million to rural broadband scheme
Hampshire County Council is investing £1 million to get high-speed broadband out to the most rural parts of the county. The funding will ‘top-up’ the Government’s existing Gigabit Broadband Voucher Scheme, to help people in hard-to-reach locations get a fast, reliable broadband service.
The scheme will enable eligible residents to get vouchers worth up to £3,000 per property – double that of the standard government voucher. Gigabit-capable broadband (also known as ultrafast broadband) has speeds of up to 1000Mbps or 1Gbps. It means residents will be getting the latest technology, delivered straight to their homes – with final speeds being determined by the package chosen by the resident.
To qualify for the scheme, residents must live in a rural area, be unable to get broadband speeds of 100Mbps or more and apply as a group of two or more premises. Not everyone within a community has to apply – the aim is for there to be enough interest to cover the installation costs (or as near as possible), so that the infrastructure can be built, and gigabit-capable broadband can be made available. [if your broadband speed allows. If not, ummmm]
Edition 21 – Wednesday 19 August
It’s OK To…
An It’s Ok To… digital campaign went live on Monday 10 August with adverts on Facebook and Google initially targeting people who have interests in topics relating to shielding. The adverts link to a new landing page on Connect to Support Hampshire that details the five key actions of the campaign and signposts to relevant parts of the website. The campaign aims to reassure people who are coming out of shielding with practical advice to feel confident with getting going again. It recognises that some people may feel nervous at first and it may take a while to get used to things that were considered “normal” before Covid-19.
Adults Safe Haven in Leigh Park is re-opening
Havant and East Hants Mind are delighted to announce the re-opening of their Adults Safe Haven location. All clients and visitors to the Safe Haven must wear a mask, our staff will also be wearing appropriate PPE and adhering to strict social distancing, safety and cleaning protocols. The Adults Safe Haven will be open from Saturday 1st August. They are back to our usual location of The Hub in Leigh Park, and normal opening hours from Monday – Friday 6.30pm-10.30pm and Weekends and Bank Holidays 1pm-10.30pm.
The Adults’ Safe Haven is for any adult needing immediate support at a time of crisis. If you are unable to make it to the Safe Haven for any reason our Freephone number is still available during the Safe Haven opening hours on 0300 303 1560.
New phone numbers to contact Adults’ and CYP’s Safe Havens
Children and Young People’s Safe Haven – To contact us please call Freephone 0300 303 1580 between 5pm – 8pm Tuesdays, Wednesdays or Thursdays.
Adults’ Safe Haven – To contact the Adults Safe Haven, please call Freephone 0300 303 1560 Monday – Friday 6.30pm-10.30pm and Weekends and Bank Holidays 1pm-10.30pm
Parenting Information Sessions
Do you have a child aged 8 to 16 years?
Are they struggling to cope with today’s issues?
Do you want help to support them?
No Limits are running 4 parenting information sessions to help parents and carers support their children with difficult issues.
- School related stress, including transition from years 6 to 7 – 1st September 2020
- Online and Cyber Safety – 6th October 2020
- Children’s Mental health concerns (coping strategies and resilience) – 3rd November 2020
- Support your child’s friendship issues (primary & secondary school) – 1st December 2020
Cost: £10 per person, per session / Delivery: via Zoom, once paid, you will be emailed a link / Time: 7pm to 8:30 pm with 30 mins informal questions at 8:30 pm
To book a space on to any of these sessions please register here
Children’s bike giveaway
Bespoke Biking Winchester have more children’s donated bikes than they can re-home, so they are launching a scheme to give away childrens bikes to those that need them. They often get more donations than they can re-home, so are introducing a new ‘Children’s Bike Giveaway’. They will give away bikes to children who otherwise wouldn’t have the chance to own one. They aim to do this periodically throughout the year (as long as we have the supply). They are inviting community organisations to nominate a child (or children) who may benefit from the scheme. The child’s details would be anonymised and chosen at random from those nominated. Children’s identities would, of course, remain anonymous. If you know of a child aged between 4 – 10 years old who you think may benefit, please fill in the form from the link below. Any questions, please contact Heather Evans / 07920776994 / Nomination Form
To look after our wellbeing, there are lots of activities we can do without going out that are fun and help us feel good – including crafting. Havant and East Hants Mind are inviting you to host a Virtual Crafternoon at home. All you need to do is download their step-by-step guide which will tell you everything you need to know, which you can download from their website. Get together online with your favourite people and spend an afternoon doing some crafting. Set up a fundraising page online and ask your guests to make a donation to HEH Mind to take part. Enjoy a get together with a difference and help make sure no one in our local communities has to face a mental health problem alone. If you have any questions, please send an email
UK’s poorest ‘skip meals and go hungry’ during Covid-19 crisis
The Covid-19 pandemic has had a “catastrophic” effect on the nutritional health of the UK’s poorest citizens with as many as one in 10 forced to use food banks, and vast numbers skipping meals and going hungry, according to the Government’s food safety watchdog. Food insecurity has shot up even further since lockdown as people’s income reduced, the Food Standards Agency (FSA) said, heightening the risk both of malnutrition and obesity as struggling families adopted highly restrictive “basic sustenance” diets that largely cut out healthy foods.
Click here to read the full article
Mental Health Campaign for men in rural areas
The ‘Real People, Real Stories’ campaign features the experiences of men from isolated communities who have struggled with mental health.
Supported by the Farming Community Network (FCN) and NFU Mutual Charitable Trust, the campaign comes after new research released by the Samaritans showed nearly half of men aged from 20 to 59 in rural communities had experienced feelings of anxiety during the lockdown.
Last year the Samaritans launched the Rural Support Initiative through its York branch, aimed at supporting those in rural communities who can feel as if they are struggling alone. The charity said problems of isolation and lack of social care funding had been heightened by the recent Covid-19 lockdown.
Supporting your recovery after Covid-19
NHS England has launched a website to provide help and advice to those who are recovering or have recovered from Covid-19. The website refers to both physical and mental health and also provides information for family, friends and carers of those who are recovering/have recovered.
Click here to view the website
Edition 19 – Wednesday 5 August
Ofgem permitting energy firms to chase unpaid bills again
In a letter to energy suppliers, Jonathan Brearley (Chief Executive Ofgem) has “given permission” for the firms to begin chasing unpaid bills again. He warns, however, that suppliers must take into account customers’ ability to pay and that any aggressive debt collection will not be tolerated. [Well that’s okay then]
National Directory of Farm and Rural Support Groups
The Prince’s Countryside Fund has produced a national directory of groups providing support, advice and guidance to the farming sector and rural communities.
Cooking at home
Supporting, empowering and inspiring healthy home cooking.
City Catering charity has launched a new programme of support – Cooking at Home with City Catering. It is open to all, and free of charge.
They are offering a program of support – piloted over summer and with the aim of extending all year round. They will be sharing healthy recipes from their school cooks, ‘how to’ videos and educational resources, professional guidance, and peer to peer support through a dedicated Facebook group
Alongside this sits their Lunch Crowd project, which aims to support those at risk of food poverty during the school holidays. They are providing groceries for the above recipes to families that we’d usually be serving hot meals to during the holidays (but can’t due to Covid); to enable them to get the full benefit from the program.
[I’m soooo bored of cooking the same old things – I’ll definitely be watching a few tutorials. My kids won’t know what’s hit them]
Age UK Portsmouth Emergency Response Project
The Emergency Response project has been created to support people for a period of 6 weeks, to reduce hospital admissions or aid discharge. Age UK Portsmouth can provide a range of help including: cleaning, shopping, laundry, accompanied visits, gardening, handyperson services, information and advice (eg. benefit checks and applications), risk assessments.
The project is designed to support users who meet the first point and at least one of the other criteria below:
- ESSENTIAL – Been discharged from hospital within the last 30 days or are at high risk of a hospital admission
- Has one or more long term medical conditions
- Over 50 years old
- In need of assistance around the home
- Lonely and/ or isolated
If you would like further information or to make a referral to the project, please contact their reception team on 023 9286 2121
Are you worried about a child during Covid-19 in England?
There’s now one co-ordinated response centre: See, Hear, Respond
See Hear Respond will contact every referral. They’ll then find a partner agency that is best-placed to help some of the most isolated and at risk children in your area.
To make a referral, please visit Barnados
A helpline is available for parents/carers/children wishing to make a referral or for more information. Please call 0800 157 7015
Help is available for economic abuse
Domestic abuse takes many forms. Economic abuse often happens alongside other types of abuse and is commonly part of a pattern of behaviour where abusers seek to control their victims by means of their finances.
With economic abuse, an abuser may restrict how you acquire, spend and manage money and economic resources, such as accommodation, food, clothing and transport. They might take your wages, stop you working, or put you in debt.
Social distancing and isolation measures may reinforce the power that an abuser has over you. If you are concerned about how Covid-19 may affect your finances or are experiencing economic abuse, help is available from Stop Domestic Abuse on 02392 065494 or at Surviving Economic Abuse
Edition 17 – Wednesday 15 July
Weekly supermarket update
A weekly supermarket update is available here (kindly provided by Rushmoor Borough Council & Rushmoor Voluntary Services). There is good availability for both delivery and click and collect this week.
Citizens Advice Southampton – contact number has changed
From 1st July, Citizens Advice Southampton implemented a new contact number for clients
The new number is: 0300 3302166
The new number will ensure that Southampton residents speak to an adviser from the Southampton office wherever possible, including mobile callers. When all local advisers are busy, calls will be redirected to the Hampshire group.
The new number replaces both the Adviceline number and the local office number. Previous numbers will remain operational.
Regular retesting rolled out for care home staff and residents
The Government has announced that staff and residents in care homes for over 65s and those with dementia will receive regular Covid-19 tests as part of a new social care testing strategy.
More details of their announcement can be found here
Visiting County Council care homes
Hampshire County Council has advised that limited visits to people in their care homes will restart this month. Visits are subject to strict social distancing and infection control procedures being in place.
Homes that have been Covid-19 free for more than 14 days are opening for pre-booked outdoor visits only. Visits will be limited to 30 minutes with a maximum of two family members allowed at any one time.
Majority of children no longer need to shield
The Department of Health and Social Care has announced that the majority of children now no longer need to shield, as evidence from paediatric clinicians shows Covid-19 poses a low risk to children and young people.
More details can be found here
Support for young people living with domestic abuse
The Hampshire Domestic Abuse Forum have produced three short films to reach out to children and young people who are living with domestic abuse. The seek to deliver some safety planning messages and information about support available.
Hope in Depression
If you or are someone you know is struggling with depression, Hope in Depression can help.
In response to lockdown, they have created a free course of six 2-hour online sessions. Attendees can explore the causes and symptoms of depression and anxiety, learn about brain chemistry and medication, hear about different types of counselling and therapy, share our experiences and learn about the many things people can do to aid our recovery and continued wellbeing.
Disclosure and barring service (DBS)
The DBS has announced that due to the increased length of time it is currently taking to process UK passport applications, they will temporarily allow expired UK passports to be used for ID checking purposes, if within 6 months of their expiry date.
Stay connected, make new friends and learn new theatre skills this summer!
Blue Apple Theatre plans to run an online summer school for young people (15-18 years old) with learning disabilities this August.
The Hampshire charity, which aims to transform the lives of people with learning disabilities through drama, dance, singing and film, plans to run the summer school over three weeks from 3 August for just £80 for 18 hours of teaching sessions.
The online classes, via Zoom, will include professional teaching in drama, dance and singing. Blue Apple’s Artistic Director Richard Conlon says: “The summer school will be a great chance for people to try something new and learn new skills.
“We hope the summer school will also help young people stay connected and feel less isolated during the long summer break.”
Eat your heart out Prue Leith!
During lockdown, Jayne Gentle from Portsmouth City Council’s Independence and Wellbeing Team has been producing cookery videos for her ‘Chop Cook Chat’ group.
They were all recorded in her kitchen by her husband, and then edited by her daughter’s partner. Hawaiin burgers, fish cakes, frittatas, scotch eggs … take a look and learn a new recipe
[lovely clean uncluttered kitchen – I wouldn’t let a camera anywhere near mine]
Benefit sanctions to return in England as jobcentres reopen
This week, the work and pensions secretary, Thérèse Coffey, indicated that benefit sanctions will be reintroduced saying it is important claimant rules are reinstated.
Face-to-face meetings in jobcentres were suspended during lockdown, and so was the system of “claimant conditionality” – a set of rules that require people to agree to carry out job search activities as a condition of claiming benefits.
Speaking in the House of Commons, Coffey refused to extend the arrangements after the three-month period finished at the end of June. “It’s important that as the jobcentres fully reopen this week, we do reinstate the need for having a claimant commitment,” she said.
Read the full article here
Edition 15 – Wednesday 1 July
Weekly supermarket update
A weekly supermarket update is available here (kindly provided by Rushmoor Borough Council & Rushmoor Voluntary Services). Delivery slot availability is increasing so there is a new table on the first page of the document to show availability.
Red Cross Hardship Fund
Would you like to give out hardship funds to your beneficiaries?
The Red Cross’s Hardship Fund provides financial help for people who can’t afford the essentials such as food and toiletries, somewhere safe to sleep, access to a telephone and the internet and fuel to keep the lights on, cook or stay warm; £120 or a 3 month grant. Clients can only be referred by a referral partner (you folks), but there are currently only 2 in the Hampshire area. If you’d like to become a referral partner, take a look at their FAQs for more information and contact Amanda Carcary
(If you do apply, please mention that you saw it in Action Hampshire’s newsletter – thanks. It just helps us track impact).
ITV Tonight is producing a programme (due to air in August) examining the current state of the economy, and what can be done to help people who need financial and emotional support. They want to speak to charities supporting people whose economic situation has been particularly affected by the Covid-19 pandemic. If you are interested in contributing, please email Emma Slater
Covid-19 and loneliness
The Office of National Statistics has published its analysis of loneliness in Great Britain during the pandemic.
The study looks at two groups:
- Those with “Chronic loneliness” – who feel lonely “often or always”
- And those with “Lockdown loneliness” – who said their well-being had been affected during lockdown
Click here to read the analysis
Children experiencing bereavement or loss
The Hampshire Safeguarding Children Partnership has published a useful list of support for children and their families who have experienced bereavement or loss.
Need to talk about cancer?
Macmillan Cancer Support has just set up a free telephone buddy scheme for people who are going through cancer and who would like to talk to someone who understands what they are experiencing. Find out more and sign up here or phone the support line 0808 808 00 00 (7 days a week 8.00 am to 8.00 pm).
Reporting Children’s Safeguarding concerns
The Children’s Safeguarding teams have made some changes to the way they work:
- The inter-agency referral form (IARF) has been changed so it’s quicker and easier to make referrals.
- To ensure partners receive feedback on the outcome of referrals in a timely manner, sending feedback will now be automated. Feedback will not be sent automatically when members of the public without parental responsibility make referrals; when the child might be endangered by feedback; when a personal (rather than work) e-mail address is used; or the case is already known to Hampshire Children’s Services.
Changes will go live from Monday 6th July
If you have any technical questions or need any further information, about the IARF and referral feedback, please contact Ashley Burton. For all other queries, please contact Children Services
‘Invisible’ unpaid carers going hungry in lockdown
Research from Sheffield and Birmingham universities suggests more than 100,000 unpaid carers in the UK have had to rely on food banks during the pandemic. Helen Walker of Carers UK says unpaid carers are at “breaking point”. The study looked at the experiences of people caring for parents and disabled relatives during the lockdown – and found 229,000 unpaid carers were in households where people had “gone hungry”. Read more here
Citizens Advice: What are the nation’s Covid-19 concerns?
Citizens Advice has produced a report based on activity on their website. It looks at what advice people were searching for over a period of three months.
For instance, the most searched word on their website during March 2020 was ‘Covid-19’. In April it was ‘furlough’ and then in May it was ‘redundancy’. View the report here
New Hospital for North/mid Hampshire
Hampshire Together: Modernising our Hospitals and Health Services is a programme that will deliver a new hospital to serve the people of north and mid Hampshire. They have a programme of on-line public consultation to make sure you get to have your say. See events and booking links below:
July 2nd – Basingstoke community
July 4th – Emergency care
July 9th – Winchester community
July 11th – Stroke and elderly care
Edition 14 – Wednesday 24 June
Adolescent to Parent Abuse
Stop Domestic Abuse are running a 6-session educational/therapeutic ‘APA’ programme. This is aimed at the parents or carers of young people aged 8 to 16 years old, who are displaying challenging and potentially abusive behaviour. The main goal is to empower parents, reducing stress and guilt and giving them concrete strategies.
Red Cross Hardship Fund
This fund provides financial help for people who can’t afford the essentials such as food and toiletries, somewhere safe to sleep, access to a telephone and the internet and fuel to keep the lights on, cook or stay warm; £120 or a 3 month grant. Clients can only be referred by a referral partner.
I asked Red Cross who the Hampshire referral partners are, and it turns out there are only 2 referral partners locally – both in Portsmouth. They would like more referral partners so that they can reach more people in need. If you work with people who meet the hardship fund criteria and are interested in becoming a referral partner, please contact Amanda Carcary
For more information about the programme and eligibility please take a look at the FAQs here
(If you do apply, please mention that you saw it in Action Hampshire’s newsletter – thanks. It just helps us track impact).
IPPR warn of over 1 million more in poverty due to pandemic
The economic fallout of the pandemic could leave 1.1 million more people below the pre-Covid poverty line at year end, including a further 200,000 children, according to analysis by the IPPR think tank.
Without urgent action to protect families from the financial hardship caused by the pandemic, this would bring the total number of children living in poverty in the UK to 4.5 million, an increase of almost 5 per cent.
Read more here
Supporting vulnerable residents
The HantsHelp4Vulnerable helpline has (as of 22 June) received a total of 13,839 calls and has contacted a total of 17,971 people on the extremely vulnerable list through outbound calls.
A total of 5,945 Local Response Centre referrals for voluntary support with food, medicine or other support have been made.
The districts with the highest number of referrals from the contact centre were: New Forest (948), Basingstoke (917) and Havant (886). The district with the lowest number of referrals is Rushmoor (272).
Help with food shopping, and prescriptions consistently remain the top two reasons for residents seeking support.
Social impact of Covid-19
The Office for National Statistics has published the indicators from the Opinions and Lifestyle Survey on the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on young and older people (covering the period from 3 April to 10 May).
Summary of findings:
“Older people are experiencing some aspects of the lockdown situation differently from younger people, worrying less about finances but worrying more about access to essentials. Keeping in touch with friends and family remotely and doing activities such as gardening and reading are helping them cope. They are more likely to be looking out for their neighbours and feel supported by their local communities. Interestingly, people in their 60s are the least optimistic about when life will return to normal, with more than a quarter thinking it will take at least a year or will never return to normal”.
“Younger people were generally more optimistic about lockdown, with more than half expecting life to return to normal within 6 months. One of their biggest worries was the impact on schools and universities, in particular being unable to attend them, the quality of their education and uncertainty around exams. While they were more optimistic, young people were much more likely to report being bored and lonely during the lockdown period, and 42% of them reported that it was making their mental health worse. They turned to TV, friends and family and exercise to help them cope during this time.”
Edition 13 – Wednesday 17 June
Weekly supermarket update
A weekly supermarket update is available here (kindly provided by Rushmoor Borough Council & Rushmoor Voluntary Services).
Asda and Tesco currently have some delivery availability over the next two weeks.
Ocado are now emailing priority customers directly when slots become available, rather than customers needing to regularly log-in and check availability.
Test and Trace scam
Hampshire Trading Standards are urging residents to be aware of a new scam. Scammers are pretending to be the NHS Test and Trace Service, and asking for payment card details to cover the cost of the testing kit. It is important to note that NHS Test and Trace is completely free.
- They will never ask for bank details or payments
- They will never ask you to set up a password or pin number over the phone
- They will never ask you to call a premium rate number such as those starting with 09 or 087.
For further advice or to report an issue, phone Citizens Advice Consumer Helpline on 0808 2231133. Citizens Advice has launched advice on Covid-19 scams, including a scam checker.
Mobile network operators have agreed that customers will not incur data charges when seeking information and support online from a range of websites such as: Victim Support, Rape Crisis, Refuge and NSPCC. These measures will be in effect until at least 31 October.
From the Harp
Alice McGarvie (a registered Occupational Therapist) will be loaning harps for free to health and care facilities. Each month she will provide (via Zoom) an activity that can be done with the harps. And a monthly therapeutic harp music video on YouTube that can be played over and over, with the video or just audio in lounges and rooms in care homes. An explanation of her service is here, or she can be contacted through her website.
Carers in Southampton are sending out a postal mailing to male carers, enclosing a cancer prevention booklet and some information on Covid-19. The booklets are published via Men’s Health Forum and have been funded by a grant from the Communities Against Cancer project at Action Hampshire. See more details of their vital work here [I promise I didn’t write that myself]
They will also be taking the opportunity to gently remind carers of the increased risk of Covid-19 to all males and especially BAME males.
The theme for Men’s Health Week 2020 is ‘Take Action on Covid-19’
Regardless of age or fitness levels, men are twice as likely to die with Covid-19 as women. People from black, Asian and minority ethnic (BAME) communities are also at higher risk. Men’s Health Week 2020 focuses on what we can all do to prevent the virus doing more damage.
Men and Covid-19
- take action to avoid spreading the virus
- take action to get the best out of lockdown and the ‘new normal’
- take action to beat ‘underlying conditions’
Men and cancer
Of the cancers that men and women ‘share’, men are 56% more likely to develop one of these cancers and 67% more likely to die. Read more here about men and cancer
Social impacts on disabled people
The Office for National Statistics has published indicators from the Opinions and Lifestyle Survey on the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on disabled people in Great Britain.
In summary, when compared to non-disabled people, disabled people are likely to be more anxious about the impact of the pandemic on their wellbeing, access to essentials, and access to healthcare. They are also likely to leave their homes less frequently, feel more unsafe when they do, and are more likely to report feeling lonely.
Edition 12 – Wednesday 10 June
Weekly supermarket update
A weekly supermarket update is available here, (kindly provided by Rushmoor Borough Council & Rushmoor Voluntary Services). No major changes this week, however Asda, Iceland and Tesco were all showing available delivery slots on Monday morning.
National Carers Week 8-14 June 2020
Princess Royal Trust for Carers in Hampshire would like to invite all Hampshire Carers to a Zoom singalong on Friday 12 June at 10.30.
Lockdown Art Competition
Running until 10th June
- What has lockdown meant to you and your caring role?
- Can you express this in a piece of Art, a photo or a poem?
Send them in virtually to us by the 10th June and we are delighted to say that BBC Breakfast Presenter Mike Bushell will judge them and award a prize to the winner.
For more information on how to log into the virtual sessions or about the competition please contact 01264 835246 or email
Carers Virtual Coffee Mornings
The Princess Royal Trust for Carers in Hampshire
Whilst the Carers Hubs, Support Groups and GP Clinics are temporarily suspended we want you to know that support is still available to you.
Join us for Virtual Coffee Mornings, and chat to a Carer Support Worker and other carers. Grab a tea or a coffee, a slice of cake or a biscuit and log in to participate.
For details of how to join please call 01264 835246 or email
The Office for National Statistics (ONS) has published an analysis of loneliness during the Covid-19 pandemic. They explored who is reporting feeling lonely, what their lived experience is and how they are coping.
Shielding and young people
Public Health England has updated the guidance on shielding for young people to reflect that those who are shielding can now leave their homes if they wish to spend time outdoors.
It may have rained a lot recently but…
Water companies are seeing a big increase in water usage at the moment with more of us being at home during the day and unseasonably warm weather. They are asking customers to try to reduce their water use to avoid a water shortage in the coming months. Tips on how to do save water (and in some cases how to claim some freebies) can be found here
The show must go on
Basingstoke’s Community Radio continues to broadcast with presenters hosting their radio shows from home. Determined not to be beaten by Covid-19, they have managed to air with live and pre-recorded shows every week. The volunteer presenters have been entertaining and supporting their local community, making sure people know about the help and support available locally.
You can listen here
Edition 11 – Wednesday 3 June
Weekly supermarket update
A weekly supermarket update is available here, (kindly provided by Rushmoor Borough Council & Rushmoor Voluntary Services). No significant changes this week, but Asda, Iceland and Tesco were all showing available delivery slots on Monday morning.
National Carers Week 8-14 June 2020
Hot on the heels of Volunteers Week, comes Carers Week. Princess Royal Trust for Carers in Hampshire would like to invite all Hampshire Carers to enjoy the following interactive events:
- Tuesday 9th June 10.30am—Zoom—Estate Planning/Wills/POA
- Friday 12th June 10.30am—Zoom—Singalong with Maddison
Lockdown Art Competition
Running until 10th June
- What has lockdown meant to you and your caring role?
- Can you express this in a piece of Art, a photo or a poem?
Send them in virtually to us by the 10th June and we are delighted to say that BBC Breakfast Presenter Mike Bushell will judge them and award a prize to the winner. For more information on how to log into the virtual sessions or about the competition please contact 01264 835246 or email
LifeSkills, the free employability and financial capability programme, has created easy-to-use virtual resources to supplement your support package for adults and families. The programme offers short, flexible modules and virtual learning sessions to help beneficiaries identify and achieve their goals.
Lifeskills aims to support people of all ages, and has tailored support hubs for:
Edition 10 – Thursday 28 May
Weekly supermarket update
A weekly supermarket update is available here (kindly provided by Rushmoor Borough Council & Rushmoor Voluntary Services). There are no major changes this week, however Iceland, Tesco and Morrisons were all showing available delivery slots on Tuesday morning. This is the first week where delivery slots have been available.
For those managing community food groups, Morrisons has launched a wholesale spin-off service to not-for-profit organisations and councils who are in need of food supplies during the Covid-19 crisis. The service will provide bulk food supplies more cheaply and conveniently for distribution to those in need in the local community.
Asda is trialling a new virtual queuing system, as it plans to keep social distancing measures in place for the rest of the year. The new system lets shoppers virtually join Asda queues from their phones, allowing them to wait in their cars instead of standing in line outside store entrances. The supermarket has trialled the system in Leeds, and is planning to roll it out to other stores.
Referring vulnerable people for food deliveries
DEFRA has launched a system which allows vulnerable people to be referred for reserved food delivery slots with Tesco or Iceland.
It says that the referrers can be local authorities and a small number of charities. They are rolling this out across 35 local authorities this week, and the rest over the following 2-3 weeks. The form for local authorities to register an interest in the scheme can be found here. DEFRA also has a live document listing the alternative grocery delivery services available which is being regularly updated Click here to check it out.
Universal Credit Transition Fund
DWP have notified stakeholders that due to the current pandemic, they have not been able to proceed with the £10m Universal Credit Transition Fund as planned. It is not known when they will be in a position to re-launch the fund.
They go on to say that they do still have their Flexible Support for Partnerships Fund “and the autonomy to grant awards to local partners to enable projects to support disadvantaged customer groups. I would encourage you to get in touch with Kerrie Honey or Leone Hill should you wish to discuss further.”
New ‘Home and Well’ Service
Home and Well Remote NHS Direct Service provides wrap-around Citizens Advice support for patients being discharged from hospital. Citizens Advice Hampshire are delivering the service in partnership with a CCG and utility companies. The service can help with fuel poverty, debt, unemployment, benefits (including Universal Credit), housing or relationship issues as well as sign up to the Priority Services Register.
Making an online referral (as explained in the 3 minute training video) is simple. It takes just 1 minute to complete & submit the H&W online referral form, and an Adviser will respond within 3 working days.
Support for single parents
Single Parents Support and Advice Services (SPSAS) have just been awarded a grant from Tescos Bags of Help fund to help vulnerable families with a care hamper containing a week’s worth of meals and essentials delivered to their door. Anyone who meets their criteria and are within the Hampshire and Dorset borders can apply for these. This new funding is also to help families struggling for gas or electric on prepay meter so they can top up.
If you would like to apply for support from SPSAS, please email
Join the Reading Revolution
National charity The Reader aims to create a Reading Revolution, bringing people together over a really good book.
During the pandemic they have created a number of online groups and services you can use, including a daily reading of a topical poem, twice weekly shared reading sessions and a weekly Storybarn Live which reads children’s books and nursery rhymes. Take a look around their website to see if there’s anything that could help you or your beneficiaries.
Edition 9 – Wednesday 20 May
Weekly supermarket update
A weekly supermarket update is available here (kindly provided by the lovely people at Rushmoor Borough Council & Rushmoor Voluntary Services). Changes this week include:
- Morrisons has introduced a ‘speedy shopper’ queue. Customers who want to do a smaller shop (with one basket) will gain quicker store entry and checkout.
- Iceland has prioritised its online delivery slots for ‘carers in communities’ between 8am-9am and 2pm-3pm on Fridays.
- Tesco has launched a dedicated volunteer gift card.
The Gangmasters and Labour Abuse Authority
The GLAA is asking that any concerns about labour exploitation should be reported to its Intelligence Team – 0800 4230804 or email During the present situation, there is a need to continue maintain standards and ensure that some of the most vulnerable and hidden members of society are being treated fairly.
HantsHelp4Vulnerable – automated calls
The Covid-19 Hampshire Helpline is contacting people designated by the NHS as ‘extremely vulnerable’ to offer support, should they need it. A new automated service is contacting more than 1,200 people each day to offer support. Unfortunately, some calls are not being answered, possibly due to concerns about their authenticity. Please ask your clients not to hang up if they receive a call from Hampshire County Council – they are offering support.
More information is available in HCC’s press release
Hampshire domestic abuse advice line – extended hours
Between 11th May and 9th October, Stop Domestic Abuse are extending their Advice Line to be open 9.30am – 8pm Monday to Friday. The Advice line is for victims, perpetrators, family / friends and professionals on 03300165112, email; secure email address. Refuge accommodation can be accessed 24/7 by calling the advice line for the on call emergency service.
Thriving in the garden
Interest in gardening has taken off during the Covid-19 crisis with big rises in demand for plants, seeds and know-how. To help people get the most out of their gardens, including the considerable mental and physical health benefits, Reading-based therapeutic gardening charity Thrive has launched a Gardening Club.
It’s a free weekly email with:
- How-to guides for gardening jobs
- Activities for children
- Tips to help you garden if you have a disability or long-term health condition
- Ways to benefit from nature if you don’t have a garden
To receive Gardening Club emails, click here. Also, to stave off lockdown boredom, Thrive is offering activities and games to get children interested in nature and gardening. Scavenger hunts, quizzes, word searches and crosswords are all available to download from the Thrive website
In this fascinating blog, Sabine Goodwin (Coordinator of the Independent Food Aid Network) talks about coping with “a tsunami of need and the Government’s £16m aimed at food charities”
Edition 8 – Wednesday 13 May
Weekly supermarket update
A weekly supermarket update is available (kindly provided by Rushmoor Borough Council & Rushmoor Voluntary Services).
Changes this week include:
- Asda, Waitrose (through John Lewis) and Home Bargains have all launched new essentials food boxes, with short delivery times
- Morrisons has updated their food box offer to include i) a gluten free and ii) a BBQ box
What small act could you do to create a kinder world?
This is the question Inclusion Hampshire are asking as part of their ’Little act of Kindness Pledge’, to help promote mental health and well-being.
The campaign, being run as part of Mental Health Awareness Week (18 -24 May) is looking for people to pledge a small change they will make during that week to make the world a kinder place, creating lasting change. Inclusion Hampshire, a specialist education provider, are promoting this idea as a way of showing their learners in particular how creating positive changes and being kinder to one another can create a real difference to the way we see the world, our families and community.
If you would like to get involved and share your stories of kindness or make your own pledge by video or written, then please email with details or visit the website to see some of the stories and pledges already made. The webpage will go live from 18th May.
Stay at Home Band
Home-Start Hampshire received a lovely surprise recently when local singer songwriter Richard Walters approached them with a fantastic song he had written with his 4-year old daughter Addy. Richard wrote the song with his daughter as a way of helping to pass the time and share how they are feeling during lockdown. Richard decided to involve Addy’s nursery friends in the recording and as the response was so positive, they decided to use the song to raise money for Home-Start Hampshire.
Finding the Words at home
Anvil Arts and Andover Mind are running a creative project for carers and people living with dementia. They would like to hear stories from your household that they will then turn into poetry. If you are interested, or think that a friend or relative might be, then please email Andover Mind or call 01264 332297 (Option 3). You can also visit their website to find out more about the project.
Let Us Entertain You
For those with dementia, their families, carers and friends…
Join Andover Mind for an hour of live on-line entertainment with music and magic from a special guest performer
- Thursday 14th May, 2pm – 3pm
- Email for joining details or call 01264 332297
When in isolation, how can human relationships continue without access to, or an ability to use, a smartphone? Reason Digital is now able to repurpose Android phones as a simple ‘one button video call service’. They call it HelpinHand. Could it benefit your volunteers or service users? If so, please contact them here
National Energy Action
NEA produces an annual investigative report of the state of fuel poverty in the UK. This year it wants to highlight the impact of Covid-19 on fuel poor households. NEA is therefore seeking the views and experiences of organisations to inform this and there is a call for evidence out (closing date 29 May).
Edition 7 – Wednesday 6 May
Weekly supermarket update
A weekly supermarket update is available here (kindly provided by Rushmoor Borough Council & Rushmoor Voluntary Services). Changes this week include:
- Aldi is now offering a volunteer gift card, with the option of sending vouchers by post. (Aldi is the only supermarket to offer a postage option, rather than delivery by email only).
- Tesco has increased their support for NHS and priority workers by revising their priority times.
- Morrisons has announced a special ‘VE Day Afternoon Tea Food Box’. Details are included in the document, but the web page isn’t showing the box as an option yet.
- Uber Eats are now offering grocery delivery from local stores.
Buying groceries online
Also from the lovely people in Rushmoor, a step-by-step guide to doing online shopping.
Supporting bereaved people
Southampton Voluntary Services have produced an online video on ‘Supporting the Bereaved’. You may find this particularly useful if you are telephone befriending someone who has been bereaved.
New Coronavirus support line
British Red Cross has set up a helpline to support people facing a range of issues because of coronavirus and lockdown. The helpline can provide practical and emotional support for anything from accessing food or medicines, to dealing with loneliness. The phone number is: 0808 196 3651 and is available daily from 10am to 6pm. The service is free and completely confidential.
Virtual Village Hall
Royal Voluntary Service have set up a ‘virtual village hall’ with links to various activities. There are both live and pre-recorded activities to join in with, plus some downloadable guides to print off and share with family members or friends who may not have internet access.
Time for reflection … and music
At stressful times like these, music can be a source of relaxation. Live music is not currently available but all is not lost. Weyhill Electronic Organ Society usually run monthly concerts, but some of their music is now available on their website and YouTube. The concerts are aimed particularly at people who prefer their music to be melodic, easy listening and tuneful. Until their concerts return, just visit Weyhill Electronice Organ Society… and enjoy the music.
Connected Living (part of Aster Group) have a wide range of wearable devices, smart appliances and lifelines for the home, available for rent. Their devices and wearable pendants connect to a monitoring centre at the press of a button, where customers can speak directly to a trained adviser or reach emergency services. They can also support patients returning home from hospital, and provide their services free of charge for the first four weeks. They are recognised key workers and safety is at the heart of everything they do. For more information call the team on 0333 4008299 or visit their website.
Buddy Dogs for children with sight loss
The Buddy Dog service from Guide Dogs is for children with sight loss, and their families. Applications are open in Hampshire. They are running Buddy Dog Discovery sessions via webinar for parents/carers who would like to find out more. Next webinars are: 12 May, 19 May and 26 May. To book a place on one of these sessions, parents/carers can contact our advice line on 0800 781 1444 – full instructions of how to access the webinar will be provided. More information here
Home-Start Hampshire’s team of dedicated staff and volunteers are still working and providing remote support to families in need, and are still accepting new referrals. They are currently only able to accept referrals electronically. The referral form can be downloaded from Home-Start’s website, where you can also find email addresses for each of their offices or you can email completed referrals.
It’s Pony time!
Bodster Equine Assisted Learning C.I.C. have set up virtual sessions to replace their normal face-to-face activity. They can run sessions of approximately ½ hr via Skype, Whatsapp or Facetime.
Contact Jo/Giles on 07887 876138 or by email
Deaf/hearing impaired children
Elizabeth Foundation are still here to help families with deaf or hearing-impaired children aged 0 -5, who are struggling to support their child at home. Families can enrol (free of charge) on our online Let’s Listen and Talk programme. They can benefit from advice, guidance and information, with lots of learning materials and the opportunity to discuss their child’s needs and development with a Teacher of the Deaf by telephone, skype or email. The programme also provides hundreds of games and activities to use in the home so parents can support the development of listening and talking whilst having great fun with their child. No family needs to feel alone. Sign up for FREE today here
Age Concern Hampshire
Age Concern Hampshire are determined to ensure no older person feels alone. ACH have developed a range of services to ensure that older people and their carers can stay safe during this challenging time. Their services include: prescription collection and delivery, shopping services, daily wellbeing calls, befriending calls, sitting services (to give carers a break), information and support, exercise programmes, and a pen-pal scheme with children. To find out more, visit their website or contact local centre teams for more information on services in your area. Or contact us on: 0800 328 7154 or email
Seek help for cancer symptoms
Cancer can’t be put on hold. The NHS has launched a campaign encouraging people to contact their GP if they are experiencing any signs of cancer. GP surgeries are still open and many are using online and telephone consultations. “The earlier a cancer is diagnosed, the more likely it is treatment will be successful and the higher the chance of survival. So even in these stressful times it’s vital people don’t delay seeking help with cancer symptoms.” Michelle Mitchell, CEO of Cancer Research UK. Please help to make sure your service users are aware of this message.
The NHS is urging the public to attend all regular vaccination appointments to prevent outbreaks of serious diseases and reduce pressure on the health service.
Edition 6 – Wednesday 29 April
Domestic Abuse in Hampshire during lockdown
Shonagh Dillon from Aurora New Dawn and Claire Lambon from Stop Domestic Abuse talk to Kirsty Rowlinson about domestic abuse in Hampshire during the lockdown. “In entrenched domestic abuse situations, the abuse and control will have been happening before, and lockdown will have exacerbated those problems and made it harder for victims to come forward”. “We are expecting a lot from our staff currently, but we know that when we go back to any kind of near normal, we’re going to be expecting even more of them. So we really need to recognize the amazing contribution that these key workers are making and will continue to make.” “Whilst working from home brings its own set of unique challenges, working in refuge during lockdown and Covid-19 brings a whole other set of challenges”!
Watch the interview here
A weekly supermarket update is available (kindly provided by Rushmoor Borough Council and Rushmoor Voluntary Services).Changes this week include:
- Morrisons have created a food box specifically for Ramadan
- Sainsburys will be updating their store hours this week. The advice is to check the local store before visiting, until hours have been standardised
- Asda have reduced their opening hours and are now closing at 8pm rather than 10pm (on weekdays), with Sunday times amended to 11am-5pm
Priority home deliveries
Government plan to extend priority home deliveries to wider group. In Sunday’s daily coronavirus briefing George Eustice recognised that some people outside the ‘shielded’ group may need help getting food because of a disability or medical condition and lack of local support. He announced some supermarkets will be working with Government and Local Authorities on a referral system so that when someone is not ‘shielded’ but vulnerable for another reason and in “desperate need”, their Local Authority can refer them to a supermarket priority delivery slot. RNIB and other charities have lobbied for this change.
Alternative options for food delivery
A list of local suppliers across the county offering home delivery has been compiled by Hampshire Fare, and is available here
NHS volunteer responders: Self referrals now open
As of this week, people can now refer themselves for help from an NHS volunteer. If you meet certain criteria and need help collecting shopping, medication or other essential supplies or are feeling lonely, call 0808 196 3646 (8am to 8pm). Carers can make a referral on someone else’s behalf, and can self-refer if this will enable them to continue in their caring role.
The Blue Lamp Trust continue to accept referrals to the Bobby Scheme for clients who are at serious risk of harm or victims of Domestic Abuse. They can provide crime and fire prevention support to improve home security. They can also fit key safes for clients who need to allow access to carers. All visits can be conducted in a manner that protects the health of both client and the fitter. Complete the form on the website or ring 0300 777 0157
Chat to a friend
During the current crisis, Carers Together are also running Chat to a Friend. If you are feeling isolated or lonely, ring us for a chat about any concerns, maintaining a sense of wellbeing or to get information on services and facilities available to support you. Ring free on 0800 032 3456 to speak with someone who can help. They can also arrange to telephone people who are unable to call themselves.
Carers in Southampton
Carers in Southampton is a free service for adults who give their time, unpaid, to look after someone who needs additional support, such as a family member, a friend, or a neighbour. Their services are available to those living in areas served by Southampton City Council. Their website has information on many support services. They can be contacted by phone on: 0238 058 2387 or email
Support for carers
Carers Together’s CALL line is still open every day for unpaid carers to have a chat, offload concerns, share worries or access information. Ring free on 0800 032 3456
Our doors may be closed but we’re still open! Our friendly and supportive staff are on hand Monday to Friday 9.30am – 5pm. Or leave us a message outside these hours and we’ll get in touch. We are providing advice, information and support to carers and people with dementia and memory problems. Contact us if you have any concerns either by calling 0126 433 2297 (option 3) or email
Lockdown exercise classes from Parkinson’s UK
Parkinson’s UK has launched a series of online exercise classes. The charity says exercise can be as important as medication to help people with Parkinson’s manage their symptoms. The new virtual classes, shared on their Facebook page, include a mix of cardio, balance and chair-based strength and flexibility training. All the classes will be uploaded to the charity’s YouTube channel over the coming weeks so people can watch on demand at a time that’s right for them.
Hampshire Macmillan Citizens Advice Service (HMCAS) is open for any clients who are affected by cancer and live in or receive treatment in Hampshire. Whether that is the patient, family members or someone who is caring for them. They have extended their telephone helpline 0344 847 7727 so you can speak to a caseworkers between 9am and 4pm, Monday – Friday (except Bank holidays). They can help with benefits, grants, blue badges, housing, employment issues and more.
Edition 5 – Wednesday 22 April
Butterflies Bereavement Support remains fully operational is still open and has increased its services, with dedicated online bereavement counselling and support, virtual support groups and also a lonely persons support service in addition to all the other services that remain active. They cover the whole of Hampshire, Portsmouth and Southampton. Email or call Tel: 07889009393
Covid-19: Making payments safely in lockdown
Many people will be relying on others to make purchases for them during lockdown. Whoever it is, it is important to take steps to keep money safe when providing them with the means to pay, or reimbursing them. Particularly as criminals are looking at new ways to target people during the COVID-19 crisis. UK Finance has set out the different ways that payments can be made and the precautions that should be taken to protect money.
During the current crisis, Carers Together are also running Chat to a Friend. If you are feeling isolated or lonely, ring us for a chat about any concerns, maintaining a sense of wellbeing or to get information on services and facilities available to support you. Ring free on 08000 3 23456 to speak with someone who can help. They can also arrange to telephone people who are unable to call themselves.
Carers’ Resource says the Covid-19 pandemic has created huge uncertainty for informal carers, so having a plan for this and other emergencies is crucial. It says: “Download our simple Plan B document and use it to keep the key information about you and those you care for that others might need to know. And use it as a springboard for planning what you might need to do in the event of an emergency.”
Carers UK have brought together the questions they have most frequently been asked by carers, to help address the main concerns and help put carers’ minds at rest, reassuring them that they’re not alone and guiding them to what support there is to help.
Alzheimer’s Society have created advice and practical tips for people living with dementia and those supporting them – either in their own home or from a distance, to help during the coronavirus pandemic. They also have advice for people with dementia living alone.Alzheimer’s Society can answer all your questions about dementia and give you tips if you find it difficult to follow the NHS advice about coronavirus.
- Call the Alzheimer’s Society Dementia Connect support line on 0333 150 3456
- Visit the Alzheimer’s Society website for the most up to date information and advice
- Join the Alzheimer’s Society online community Talking Point where you can connect with others affected by dementia in a similar situation.
- Use the Alzheimer’s Society Dementia Connect online support tool to find dementia information and support that is right for you.
Edition 4 – Wednesday 15 April
Help for vulnerable Hampshire residents
The Coronavirus Hampshire Helpline – Hantshelp4vulnerable – can be contacted on 0333 370 4000. The helpline is available seven days a week, from 9am-5pm. The helpline will provide advice and information, as well as co-ordinate requests for practical help, passing them through to the appropriate Local Response Centre. There is one LRC based in each of Hampshire’s 11 districts.
Extremely vulnerable people
If someone has a medical condition that makes them extremely vulnerable to coronavirus, they should register here [insert link] and say whether or not they need support. Some people may have been contacted by the NHS already, but not everyone will have been. People can register themselves or you can register on behalf of someone else. More information
Edition 3 – Wednesday 8 April
We have all heard in the media that incidents of domestic abuse are increasing during these troubled times. In response, Stop Domestic Abuse are extending the operating hours of their Advice line, and introducing a service so victims can make contact via Messenger (for trial periods).
Virtual Drop-in Service
Victims of domestic abuse that cannot access a telephone due to isolating with a perpetrator will be able to contact a worker via messenger 9.30am – 11.30am, 3.00-5.00pm, 6.00-8.00pm Monday – Friday. Facebook
Victims and perpetrators (not professionals) will be able to call the advice line 9.30am – 5.30pm Monday – Thursday and 9.30am-5.00pm Friday. For professionals, the Advice Line opening hours remain: 11:30am – 14:30pm Monday – Friday.
Please note that refuges are still open and continue to be available 24 hrs by calling 033 0016 5112 and following the answerphone instructions.
Mobilise are holding ‘online cuppa’ sessions’. “We are a bunch of carers coming together for supportive chats to share practical tips and tricks, and sometimes just to vent. Looking after somebody who might be vulnerable to Coronavirus is really tough. There’s no right answer, but we can figure things out together.”
Coronavirus seems to be creating a perfect environment for fraudsters to thrive. City of London Police reported a 400% increase in scams as a result of coronavirus-related fraud. Which? have produced a helpful video “Coronavirus scams: how to spot them and stop them”
Edition 2 – Wednesday 1 April
Priority Services Register
Please encourage family/friends/neighbours/ service users who are eligible (eg. restricted mobility, deaf, blind, disabled, long term illness…) to register on the Priority Services Registers operated by their utility companies. If there is a major incident or problem, those who have registered should be offered extra information and practical support. When this current situation has eased, customers who are on the Priority Services Register will continue to receive extra assistance and support. Links to Priority Services Register (PSR) can be found on the websites of all utility providers.
Please check opening times of your local pharmacy, as their hours may have recently changed. You can find your nearest pharmacy contact details here
he government is helping pharmacies to deliver prescriptions. Prescriptions will continue to cover the same length of time as usual. If you do not currently have your prescriptions collected or delivered, you can arrange this by:
- Asking someone to pick up your prescription from the local pharmacy (this is the best option, if possible);
- Contacting your pharmacy to ask them if they have a volunteer who can deliver it to you (volunteers will have been ID checked)
Asking the pharmacy if they can deliver it to you.
Energy suppliers and self isolation
The government has agreed measures with energy suppliers to support customers self-isolating at this time. Customers with pre-payment meters can speak to their supplier about options to keep them supplied – including nominating a third party for credit top ups, having a discretionary fund added to their credit or receiving a pre-loaded top up card so their supply is not interrupted. More generally any customer in financial distress will also be supported by their supplier. The agreement between BEIS and the domestic energy supply companies can be found here
National Energy Action (NEA)
NEA are running a telephone advice line for people who are worried about paying their energy bills. The Warm and Safe Homes Advice Service is open Monday – Friday 9.00 am to 5.00 pm and can be contacted (free) on 0800 304 7159 or download a referral form here
The UK’s major telecommunications providers have agreed a set of commitments to support and protect vulnerable consumers including: working with customers who may struggle to pay their bills; removing data allowance caps on all fixed broadband services; offering new and generous mobile and landline packages and; priority repairs for vulnerable and self-isolating customers.