The following are recent statements from VCSE sector organisations:
EPIC Teesside CIO
We have received funding from Reaching Communities, County Durham Community Foundation, Tudor, Teesside Community Foundation and Tesco bags for help to expand our Covid 19 programme.
We have continued to work with SBC/Catalyst community hub to deliver weekly food parcels to people either Shielding or suffering from food poverty. We have delivered over 270 to date and have found that the social contact is valued as much as the content of the parcels so its now become a befriending activity for some of the most vulnerable. A great example was an elderly gentleman of 82 who was shielding had difficulty proving he was eligible for a free TV licence one of our team picked this issue up and resolved it for him.
Our programme is ran by our management team & volunteers providing vital contact to the most vulnerable in the Newtown Ward & other areas or the Borough.
Expanding our gardening activity. We have 8 regular volunteers coming in to help tend to the garden grow produce, they are turning into a friendship group. The produce will be used to help provide meals for struggling families. The social contact the garden offers is vital to people mental & physical well being.
Building on our delivery of food parcels we have linked to the Stockton Borough Council/Catalyst Covid Community Hub and asked for referrals in the Newtown Ward where we are happy to do bespoke shopping, collect prescriptions
We are shortly beginning to provide hot meals twice weekly to shielding or vulnerable elderly residents in Newtown.
We are on our fourth week into providing Craft packs for young people from our youth club & Young Carers from Eastern Ravens, the work will contribute to our summer Holiday Hunger programme which will include a mosaic depicting young people experiences of the pandemic.
We are finalising our Summer Holiday Enrichment programme with a range of activities funded through Public Health & The 13 group we will link our activities with the National NCS programme.
Middlesbrough & Stockton Mind – Community Minded
‘Community Minded’ is an innovative project that uses volunteering as a way to support better mental health.
Volunteering opportunities have taken a hit from the pandemic; many not being able to volunteer as usual due to shielding and charity shops etc not being able to operate as usual.
Community Minded wants to support by,
Providing free training to organisations on the Impact of Volunteering on Mental Health which will include resources that will support staff supporting volunteers
Provide invaluable ongoing support to both organisations and volunteers, whether they be existing or historical
Throughout the pandemic, Community Minded has been working with organisations to help to support and up-skill current, suspended or historical volunteers. From ‘wellbeing check ins’ to supplying and working through wellbeing resources, Community Minded is here to help volunteers and organisations through these difficult times.
Community Minded would love to support more volunteers and organisations across the Stockton on tees area. If you are interested in Community Minded and would like to know more please contact Kayleigh or Matthew at email@example.com
Christians Against Poverty – Debt Help
With effect from 11 May, we are now able to take new appointment bookings for our Debt Help service via our helpline 0800 328 0006.
We are not able to see clients face to face, and so we have changed our debt counselling service to offer a telephone based debt help service that will help and support the clients through the process. We have worked hard with regulators to ensure that our service is compliant, and we have trialled the service to ensure that it will work as well as it can do for vulnerable clients.
We want to thank you for your support, and for referring clients to us. We greatly value the relationship that we have with you and look forward to helping many more of our shared clients in the future.
The National Careers Service
The National Careers Service is still open and here for you, delivering free impartial careers information, advice and guidance to adults and young people to support their decision making about learning and work.
During COVID-19, we are able to support workers currently furloughed and those looking for work in a range of ways:
identifying skills and strengths
exploring career options
CV advice and guidance
interview hints and tips
exploring training and volunteering opportunities.
To book a free and impartial appointment with a professional Careers Adviser call 0800 100 900. Lines are open 7 days a week from 8am – 10pm.Keep Doing Good is NCS’ push to help communities rebuild and recover as the country begins to emerge from lockdown. 15-17 year olds (16 by 31 August 2020), or 18 year old NCS Grads, can pledge to donate their time through volunteering and social action opportunities. By signing up at wearencs.com/keep-doing-good they’ll be linked with relevant volunteering opportunities in their local area, such as working in collaboration with the Charity Retail Partnership at a charity shop. They could also do a social action project of their own choosing. They’ll pick up new skills, help rebuild communities, create positive change and get all of our futures off to a good start. Opportunities will run throughout the summer and beyond.
FE/School Support – NCS will be providing a new FE/schools support offer for 16-17 year olds. This will be free to FE providers and schools and delivered in late summer and throughout autumn. It will complement activities that the FE providers or schools are leading on as part of their post-COVID-19 re-engagement or induction phases with students.
FE providers and schools will be offered a menu of NCS activities over 2-10 days which can be tailored to meet needs and which reflect the new world and new normal as young people face into their future. Examples of sessions will include: employability, health and wellbeing, careers guidance, citizenship and skills for independent living.
ReGenerate – Hope For Autism CIC We are currently providing:
Remote phone-based sessions for adults and teenagers on the autism spectrum, talking through anxieties and other issues, and providing support tailored around individual needs.
Remote phone-based sessions for parents of children who are struggling to cope, talking through issues, offering practical advice and support.
Provision of resources and ideas to help enable children and adults of all ages to get the sensory stimulation they need during this lockdown situation (including calming deep pressure and indoor movement-based sensory exercises), to reduce restlessness and hyperactivity, and help autistic individuals feel calmer and more settled.
Emergency visits and support in the case of issues around toileting and toilet anxiety that are having an impact on wellbeing and family life.
Due to the ongoing Covid – 19 pandemic, Thirteen’s Employability Service is offering remote employability and training support to customers across the Tees Valley.
We are continuing to deliver a number of employability services for both our tenants and the wider public.
Although we are no longer meeting customers face to face, we are still offering remote 1-1 support and group training via video / voice calls, emails and texts.
We are working with employers across the area to fill Key Worker positions in numerous sectors. Our volunteering service is also seeking opportunities to support customers into external volunteering opportunities to support local services to the community.
Since lockdown has come into place, we have supported customers into work on a daily basis. During this time we are also supporting customers to access distance learning opportunities in the comfort of their home to gain accredited qualifications.
Our service prides itself on delivering a quality offer to our customers and partners in these difficult times, whilst maintaining safety for our staff.
We would love discuss how your service is operating in these times and potentially set up a meeting / phone call to discuss partnership working.
Tees Valley Community Foundation Whilst TVCF is still processing general grant applications, it is prioritising requests from those groups who are directly responding to the impact of Covid-19 – applications for other purposes will be processed but may experience a slight delay.
Tees Valley Community Foundation’s mission is to empower local communities to address disadvantage and exclusion
For more information please visit – www.teesvalleyfoundation.org
Stockton & District Advice & Information Service
Due to COVID19 and the need to protect clients and staff we have had to make the difficult decision to temporarily close our offices to the public which includes our drop-in service, face to face appointments and our Home Visiting services. We have now re-organised to provide our services via telephones, webchat and email. These services will be available Monday to Friday 9.00am-4.30pm at minimum, and some services that we will provide through our membership of national Citizens Advice will be available for longer hours. We are still able to provide most of our normal advice services by telephone, including completion of Welfare Benefit Application Forms and Debt advice.In addition, advice is available from our Stockton Welfare Advice Network ( SWAN) website and the national Citizens Advice website. Our general advice line number to ring for advice is 01642 633877. Calls to this number will receive a call back from one of our Welfare Advisers with expertise in the relevant subject area.There is also our Adviceline Service on 03444 2451 295 which will connect you directly to a Welfare Adviser.Our e-mail enquiry address is firstname.lastname@example.orgThe SWAN website address is www.stocktonadvice.org.uk and there is also extensive information on latest policy and changing regulations at https://www.citizensadvice.org.uk/We are receiving a large number of enquiries from people who have had to move onto Universal Credit for the first time due to the current crisis and our ‘Help to Claim’ service can assist with this.
The Help to Claim service can be accessed by:
• Our General Advice Line- 01642 633877
• The dedicated Help to Claim Telephone Advice service on 0800 144 8444
• Our Help to Claim Webchat service on https://www.citizensadvice.org.uk/aboutus/contact-us/contact-us/web-chat-service/We can also offer advice on Employment, Debt, Housing, Family, Health and Social Care, Energy, Immigration and Consumer problems, as well as details of the support that other organisations can provide. You can still refer clients into us either by telephone or our referral form that can be found on our website www.stockton-cab.co.uk and on our page in the SWAN website www.stocktonadvice.org.uk. If you have any questions or would like to discuss anything further, please do not hesitate to contact me.
Please stay safe and keep well.
Ian Bartlett, Manager
Billingham and Stockton Food Bank The Billingham n Stockton Borough Foodbank continues to be open at the usual times (Hardwick in St Andrews church has closed)
– Norton in St Michael n All angels Church is open on Mondays 12.30pm to 2.30pm
– Billingham centre (back door) is open Tues and Thurs 11-2
– Newtown, Stockton in Hebron church is open wed and Fri 10am to 1pm.
– The Billingham centre is open mon to thurs 9-1 to receive donations and packing boxes.
We are also delivering food boxes to those who are in financial crisis. Ideally a referral is still required by the red voucher, electronic voucher or can be organised by emailing email@example.com
or phone 07583575522 No-one should be without food.
We have a great team of volunteers working in the foodbank and delivering food boxes.
We appreciate those making donations of food and finance
Together we make a difference in our community
Thank you all
Billingham Environmental Link Programme (BELP): Due to recent Government/Public Health England advice Billingham Environmental Link Programme (BELP) have taken the difficult decision to close all our community facilities to the public with immediate effect. This decision has been taken to protect the wider community.If you need any advice/support in these difficult times we will be able to offer advice and signposting to the relevant organisations.BELP Staff will continue to cover the following telephone line – 01642 564077
We will also be regularly updating our Facebook page – www.facebook.com/thebelpbillingham
We would urge all members of the community to be vigilant and to ensure they are following up to date advice from Public Health England.
Corner house Youth Project
Due to recent Government/Public Health England advice Newtown Community Resource Centre including, The Corner House Youth Project, have taken the difficult decision to close this building to the public with immediate effect. This decision has been taken to protect the wider community. If you need any advice/support in these difficult times we will be able to offer advice and signposting to the relevant organisations.Corner House Youth Project Staff will work from home and will cover the following email address
Email: firstname.lastname@example.orgPlease also keep an eye on our Corner House Youth Project’s Facebook page for any updates.
ARC Stockton Arts Centre In light of the government’s announcement this afternoon about avoiding non-essential social contact, ARC will be closed to the public from 6.30pm, Monday 16 March. The decision to close has been made with the best interests of our customers, audiences and visitors in mind, and while we sincerely regret any inconvenience and disappointment this may cause, our responsibility to play a part in delaying the spread of COVID-19 must come first.Please visit our website for further details: http://arconline.co.uk/other/news/arc-closed-to-the-public.
DZ Circus Skills Following this evenings Government statements DZ Circus School have taken the decision for the best interest of our user’s health and wellbeing to stop all classes with immediate effect. Please keep an eye on our Facebook page for more updates, we look forward to being able to resume classes. For now, stay safe and where possible get into the garden to practise your circus skills
Middlesbrough and Stockton Mind Providing emotional support and keeping in touch during COVID-19How we can help
We’ve changed the way we work to help people more flexibly during the COVID-19 crisis.
Instead of referring people into a specific project or service related to their needs and interests, we are now providing
• Mental health and wellbeing information and advice over the phone or online for anyone in Stockton.
• Emotional support over the phone, including help with worry, anxiety, loneliness and isolation for anyone in Stockton. Contact us People can contact us directly on 01642 257020 and leave a message. We check several times a day and call people back as soon as we can.
People can contact us on email@example.com and we’ll email or phone them back.
We aim to respond on the same or next working day. IMPACT on Teesside Mental health support is still available to those who need it, including psychological wellbeing and therapy service through the new IMPACT on Teesside service. You can reach the team on 01642 573924.
Butterwick Hospice Following current guidelines, we will continue to provide day care services this week, however all-day care services will stop from Friday 20th March, we will, however, continue to maintain contact with our patients with telephone support. All of our drop in and social groups will cease with immediate effect and support will again be available by telephone and we are exploring other alternatives to maintain contact.Family support will continue to provide counselling services guided by individual circumstances. At the moment we are planning to reschedule our fundraising events. If you have booked for any of our upcoming events we will be in touch as soon as possible. Our shops are continuing to open at the moment.It is vital that we continue to receive donations at this difficult time, as we anticipate our need to support the local community will increase due to the current crisis. Obviously, our top priority will continue to be everyone’s safety and wellbeing. If we need to change the way we work we will share updates via our website, social media and through our shops.
Roseworth Big Local In response to government guidelines, we have decided to postpone all our groups until further notice. This will include: Bingo, Youth Club, Football sessions, Community choir, Running group, Walking group and any planned planting sessions. We will continue to post advice and information for our residents. We understand this is a difficult time so we are looking at creative ways to keep in touch online, over the phone and with live video chats. Follow our Facebook and Instagram page to keep updated about what’s going on in #Roseworth
Daisy Chain Superstore We are taking precautions within the Superstore to ensure everyone’s health is a priority whilst visiting us and continuing to support Daisy Chain during the current situation with coronavirus (COVID-19). We have made the difficult decision that as from Saturday 21st March, we will not be accepting any donations at our Superstore until further notice. We have taken this decision to safeguard our customers, staff and volunteers against the spread of COVID-19. As it stands, the Superstore remains open for our dedicated customers to continue to shop with us and visit our coffee shop, all whilst raising increasingly vital funds for Daisy Chain and local families affected by autism. We’d like to thank you all for your amazing on-going support during these tremendously difficult times and look forward to welcoming you all in-store.
Teesside DEmentia Link Service
We are still open as usual and here to offer support, you are not alone. All of next months Dementia, Cafe’s, Support Groups, Craft Groups, Baby Yoga, Circus Skills, Lunch Clubs, Cinema Club, Wool and Yarn Group, have been cancelled as many venues have closed. All home visits, external meetings, form filling, representation befriending and carer contact service will continue as normal, however, we do ask if you have experienced any symptoms of the virus you let us know beforehand so we can decide the best way forward.We will be offering support in different ways:
1. If you attend the craft groups we will be dropping of “crafts” to your home
2. If you are part of the Cinema club we have a number of DVD’s you can borrow we can drop these off at your home
3. If you attend the Carers Support Groups you will be contacted by the carer contact service, even if you have not registered for this service.
4. We are aware that staying in for the next 2 to 6 weeks is not an option for some people with dementia, visiting open spaces and going for walks is still OK, we will be contacting those of you who we know this apply s to in order to organise park or coast visits. We will discuss the precautions we will need to take.
5. If you are unable to go shopping, (all chemist now offer delivery service for your prescriptions) we will do our best to match you with a volunteer who can help. (if you would like to volunteer to do this please let us know) You have not been abandoned, or left to cope on your own, all services, are still available but maybe in a different form for the next month or so.
We are still open and delivering vital services such as domiciliary care. We have decided to close our youth services this evening, but we will still continue to support in other ways such as providing food packages and helping where we can.
LittleSprouts Health & Wellbeing
We are cooking meals from Hartington Rd kitchen and doing a takeaway service for the immediate community. Meals on wheels for the pensioners and helping to distribute the pack lunches for the free school meals project. Anyone who needs us to help .. please let us know.
A Way Out
A Way Out is continuing to support clients whilst operating within government social distancing guidance. The centre itself is closed and staff are working home very effectively supporting clients on a daily basis via phone, text and social media with safety planning, crisis referrals and connecting in with partner agencies. Staff are reporting an increase in engagement with all clients across all of our services, whilst this is in one sense encouraging, it is also a reflection of the increase in need under the current circumstances. Each of the A Way Out services are providing a weekly response out in the community delivering crisis food and toiletry parcels (again practising safe social distancing). In addition young people and families have been provided with activity packs… and single client received an Easter Egg! Our services are closely monitoring each client in relation to the heightened risks of hidden harm, exploitation and abuse which may become more prevalent under the current lock-down situation and working in partnership will relevant organisations and agencies to support clients when such a situation becomes apparent. Supplies of non-perishable foods and toiletries are becoming depleted and we are looking into the safest ways to replenish these stocks.
Age UK Teesside
In these challenging times, lots of people have been asking us how they can support older people who are staying at home.The services delivered by Age UK and our partners typically require an application and training process that can take several weeks to complete.In order to best support those older people who may be in need of some simple assistance immediately, we want to encourage you to take part in neighbourly volunteering.We’ve put together a simple training video and our own spin on a postcard you can complete to offer help and to provide some key information to your older neighbours. Click here for more information
SARC Teesside Sexual Assault Referral Centre is business as usual, providing 24h support for anyone who has experienced rape, sexual assault or other forms of sexual abuse.
As you are all probably aware from the press and media coverage and in light of the latest government advice, BCT Aspire has made the decision that we shall be suspending all our youth activities from Monday 23rd March until further notice. (PLEASE NOTE: Trytime is now suspended immediately).
Alzheimer’s Society Alzheimer’s Society is continually monitoring the evolving situation and following the latest Government advice with regards to our services and events. It is important to stop coronavirus spreading while also ensuring people living with dementia, and those affected by it, continue to be supported. We are concerned that isolation could also be extremely detrimental for the wellbeing of people living with dementia. We are looking at how to best to stay in touch and support people affected by dementia during this time. We hope the following information is of use when in contact with local people concerned about the impact of the virus and those affected by dementia. As the situation develops, we will update you with further information about our services and resources. In the meantime, please do not hesitate to get in contact if you have any further questions, or if we can support in any other ways.Local Alzheimer’s Society teams continue to provide information, support and guidance to those who need it. To ensure the wellbeing of our service users, volunteers and staff, we have made some changes to how this support is provided. This may change depending on future government guidance, but at present the following is in place in your area:Direct support for people affected by dementia: – All face-to-face and home visits have currently been suspended.
– We will increase the number of keeping in touch telephone calls with service users to help support their wellbeing and guard against isolation.
– We will be extending the operating hours of our national Dementia Connect Support Line. Trained advisors can be contacted via 0333 150 3456 for advice and guidance. Group support: All local group sessions have been suspended.
We are working with our volunteers to develop ways to continue to support group members via other methods. Online support:
Advice and guidance on a range of issues is available on our website. We would encourage people to join Dementia Talking Point. This is our online community where people affected by dementia can receive valuable support from people in similar situations. Further support:
People with questions about what they should be doing and how they should be interacting with people living with dementia at this time can access this guidance.
Any community groups or individuals that wish to support vulnerable adults during this time can contact Alzheimer’s Society for information and guidance. This includes how to access our online Dementia Friends awareness sessions.
Alzheimer’s Society contact details:
Telephone: 0333 150 3456
Healthwatch Stockton-on-Tees Healthwatch continue to deliver up to date reliable information to residents and is also continuing to provide the Information Signposting service which they will of course link to the Support Team. www.healthwatchstocktonontees.co.uk
SSNP and SSNP plus Our offer during the crisis is; we can receive new referrals either self-referred or from our partners via the telephone, to support people with one to one support.
The support will include:
Initial phone call to introduce the service and discuss requirements. There will then be another date/time made with a plan of next apt and content. (aprox 20 – 30 min slots) We will also give an overview of the topics which can be covered and agree which topics clients would like to focus on. Agree date and time for next call. Potentially weekly or fornightly calls.
Topics covered can include Healthy Eating, Benefits of relaxation and exercise, Goal setting and motivation, 5 Ways to Wellbeing.
Staying healthy while in isolation will be underpinned in all topics (personal hygiene, routine, staying in touch etc).
Offer to email resources, links to information.
Tees Valley Nature partnership (TVNP)
Whilst most places have closed their car parks to prevent unnecessary travel and gatherings of people sites are being kept open to allow people to get outdoors in nature for exercise so long as you can get there by foot (or push bike!)Organisations that are keeping their reserves and sites open whilst closing their car parks include: Tees Valley Wildlife Trust, the Canal and Rivers Trust, Forestry England and the Woodland Trust. They are all working hard to keep their reserves open for people during the current time as we recognise time outdoors in nature really helps our all round well-being. Read their latest newsletter
Tees Valley Routes to Work
Our team is currently working from home but are still fully equipped to offer the following support:
– Taking new referrals
– Telephone information and advice to existing and new clients
– Client employment referrals to employers seeking new staff
– Distance Learning Support through our Learning and Skills Team
– Welfare support through our Welfare Team
– Weekly telephone client support calls
– Assisting clients with on-line CV writing and applications.We are working Monday – Friday 9am – 5pm.If you would like further information or would like to refer someone to our service, please email firstname.lastname@example.org