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Care home visit

Care home visits: public forum

At our previous forums we have heard how visiting restrictions in care homes have affected people living there and their relatives. We have also heard about other ways people have been keeping in touch during Covid-19 and experiences of the changes to allow one or two designated visitors for in-person visits. We have also heard from representatives at Public Health and Northumberland County Council on the visiting guidance for care homes.

At our next forum on Friday 4 June at 10.30am we’d like to hear about your experiences now we are two months into the changes in visiting policy. We would also like to hear your feedback on preparing for you and your loved ones to have visits outside of the care home.

We will also be sharing the results of our recent online surveys for care home staff and relatives/friends of those living in care homes and looking at the next steps for this feedback moving forward.

If you would like to register for the event please contact Helen Brown at: helenb@healthwatchnorthumberland.co.uk or call us on 03332 408468.

If you cannot come along but have a question you would like an answer to, send it to us and we will ask it for you.

More on care home visiting guidance

Young Carers Northumberland

Young Carers Action Day

What is Young Carers Action Day?

Young Carers Action Day is an annual event, organised by Carers Trust and this year the theme is ‘Protect Young Carers Futures’. This year the event takes place on 16 March. The Action Day is now in its sixth year, and aims to raise awareness of young carers and the incredible contribution they make to their families and local communities. The awareness day is being promoted on social media from

How can Young Carers access support in Northumberland?

Carers Northumberland is a local charity that support carers across Northumberland. Their Young Carers Service supports young people up to the age of 18. Young Carers can access:

  • A Young Carers Worker, who offers 1-1 support, information and advice to Young Carers
  • An Active Northumberland pass – Young Carers aged 8-18 can access a free leisure pass
  • Young Carers grant – a small grants scheme is available; grants are awarded for young carers to take a break from their caring responsibilities
  • Young Carers needs assessment, and impact assessments – these assessments can help plan support for young people
  • Access to a specialist 16 plus worker who can help Young Carers, with their education choices, CV’s and accessing employment
  • A regular newsletter
  • Young Carer ID cards

If you would like to access the service or more information please contact:

Anne-Marie Johnstone, Young Carers Support Worker:

Tel: 01670 320 026

Mob: 07500 886 319

Email: annemariejohnstone@carersnorthumberland.org.uk

 

If you would like to tell us your experiences of using NHS or social care services as a carer please get in touch.

Online event – mental wellbeing support for young people

Are you a parent, carer or someone who is looking for initial support for a child or young person’s mental wellbeing? Perhaps you work with young people and want ideas about what mental health support is available in Northumberland? Come along to our online event on Wednesday 10 March from 10.30am to 11.30am and find out more about Kooth, an online counselling and support service available to all young people aged 11-25 across Northumberland.

Kooth is a safe, confidential and anonymous way for young people to access wellbeing and mental health support through self-help resources and articles, peer support and discussion, and access to fully trained and qualified counsellors until 10pm each night, 365 days per year.

This event is an opportunity to hear more about Kooth from Northumberland’s Kooth Engagement Lead Malcolm Connelly who will give a short presentation and introduction to the service, what it involves, how to access it and what you can expect. There will be a Q&A session following the presentation.

Find out more about Kooth here.

Children’s Mental Health Week took place this year from 1 to 7 February, an opportunity to shine a spotlight on children and young people’s mental health. We supported this campaign and are currently running a survey to get feedback from young people about their experiences of mental health services. However, we understand that the work does not stop with the end of this campaign and many young people will continue to need mental health support during these difficult times and beyond.

Preliminary results from our survey show that many young people do not seek formal support for their mental wellbeing and will instead rely on family and friends, but it is important that people are aware that there are local services available that can provide support and that they know how to access them.

If you would like to come along to the event please contact Helen Brown at: helenb@healthwatchnorthumberland.co.uk, or call 03332 408468 to register.

We would also like to hear from young people who are using or have used children’s mental health services in Northumberland so we can understand what is working well and what could be improved. You can share your views here.

Parents, carers and relatives of young people who have used services can also share feedback on our website.

 

 

gloved hands cupping a warm drink

Keeping Well for Winter

Keeping Well for Winter is a new programme for people with a learning disability and those who support them, to help keep them well this winter. The programme is running from January until Easter 2021 and throughout this time there will be Easy Read information, ways to stay connected and weekly Zoom activity sessions.

Every two weeks there will be a Keeping Well for Winter bulletin with the latest updates and activities. If you would like to find out more or join any of the groups email: Stephen.thompson@skillsforpeople.org.uk

Read the February bulletin

New Service for Young Carers

A new service to support young carers has been commissioned by Northumberland County Council. Carers Northumberland, the local support service for adult carers will be leading on the project.

Anne-Marie Johnstone has been appointed as the Young Carers Support Worker for Northumberland and will be working with other youth and young people’s services across the county to provide individual tailored support for young carers.

The aims of the project are to ensure that children and young people have the support they need to learn, develop, and thrive, to enjoy positive childhoods and to achieve their full potential.

The service uses a whole family approach, which ensures that both children and parents are able to get the support they need, at the right time, by supporting families to access integrated, co-ordinated, multi-agency, solution focused support. By identifying problems early, different services can work more closely together to help prevent a family’s needs escalating and requiring a more intensive intervention at a later date.

All young carers will have an assessment of their needs which identifies the level of caring and how this is impacting on their life.  A Plan will then be developed  with the young carer and their family to  help support them and reduce the negative impact of caring on their lives which will enable the young carer to access the same life opportunities as their peers.

Young carers referred to the project will also be able to access to a Young Carers Active Northumberland card for use in the county’s leisure centres, and a small grants scheme which will offer financial support to young carers to take a break from their caring responsibilities.

Anyone who is working with a family or young person, who feels that there is someone in that dynamic with a caring role can make a referral into the project.

Carers Northumberland logo

New service for young carers

A new service to support young carers has been commissioned by Northumberland County Council. Carers Northumberland, the local support service for adult carers will be leading on the project.

Anne-Marie Johnstone has been appointed as the Young Carers Support Worker for Northumberland and will be working with other youth and young people’s services across the county to provide individual tailored support for young carers.

The aims of the project are to ensure that children and young people have the support they need to learn, develop, and thrive, to enjoy positive childhoods and to achieve their full potential.

The service uses a whole family approach, which ensures that both children and parents are able to get the support they need, at the right time. By identifying problems early, different services can work more closely together to help prevent a family’s needs escalating and requiring further intervention at a later date.

All young carers will have an assessment of their needs which identifies the level of caring and how this is impacting on their life. A plan will then be developed with the young carer and their family to help support them and enable the young carer to access the same life opportunities as their peers.

Young carers referred to the project will also have access to a Young Carers Active Northumberland card for use in the county’s leisure centres, and a small grants scheme which will offer financial support to young carers to take a break from their caring responsibilities.

Anyone who is working with a family or young person in a caring role who you think could benefit from this project can make a referral here.

If you are a young carer yourself you can find out about the support available here.

Back to school support from Diabetes UK

As schools are due to reopen in September, Diabetes UK knows that parents and carers might be worried about the safety of their children with diabetes returning to school.

To help ease these worries they have organised a ‘Back to school’ question and answer session via Zoom with a panel of experts who will help to answer any questions you might have.

The Zoom session will take place on Wednesday 12 August from 7.30pm to 8.30pm.

The panel of experts will include:

  • Dr Fiona Campbell: Consultant Paediatrician and Diabetologist at Leeds Children’s Hospital
  • Carol Metcalfe: Advanced Specialist Practitioner in Paediatric Diabetes at Royal Manchester Children’s Hospital
  • James Rodger-Phillips: a Head of Department at a secondary school who lives with type 1 diabetes
  • Steve Paxton: parent of two teenagers with type 1 diabetes and Good Care In School Award assessor

The Type 1 Events team are also running further panels for parents and carers in August and September:

  • Newly diagnosed – what happens when type 1 diabetes joins your family? Tuesday 18 August – 7pm to 8.30pm.
  • Becoming more independent. Monday 21 September – 7pm to 8.30pm.

If you would like to attend any of these events you can sign up here.

All of the latest advice for managing diabetes during the coronavirus outbreak can be found on the Diabetes UK coronavirus advice page.

Cancer Information Events

Cancer Information Events Northumberland

The Northumbria Cancer Patient and Carer Group is holding a series of events across Northumberland, where you can share your ideas and experiences as a patient or carer of someone with cancer. There will also be a mix of organisations with information stalls offering advice and support. All the events start at 10.00am with lunch at 12.00pm.

 

Monday 3 February: The Roundhouse, Ashington NE63 9JZ

Wednesday 19 February: Seaton Delaval Community Centre NE25 0BW

Wednesday 4 March: Morpeth Town Hall NE61 1LZ

Wednesday 11 March: United Reformed Church, Market Place, Rothbury NE65 7UW

Thursday 26 March: Hexham Mart, Tyne Green Hexham NE46 3SG

 

There’s no need to book but if you have any queries about the events please email: info@ncpcg.org or call: 07817 515265.

These events are supported by the Northern Cancer Alliance and working with Northumbria Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust and the Empowering Communities Project team at Northumberland County Council.

 

 

Morpeth Memory Cafe

Morpeth memory Cafe is held at Morpeth Methodist Church and Centre for the Community. The cafe is for people with memory problems or dementia, and their family and friends. Come along for a chat, to pick up information and to enjoy some social time with others in a similar situation to your own. No need to book,  you can just drop in.

Refreshments will be available.

The café will run on the Thursdays shown below from 10.30am to 12.00pm in the coffee lounge at the Morpeth Methodist Centre, Howard Terrace, Morpeth. For further information please contact the church office on 01670 511078 or e-mail office@morpethmeth.org.

 

Memory Café Dates  June  – December 2019

June 6th and 20th

July 4th and 18th

August 1st and 15th

September 5th and 19th

October 3rd and 17th

November 7th and 21st

December 5th and 19th

 

Carers Northumberland logo

Carers Support Groups

Carers Northumberland holds monthly groups for carers across the county. Carers are welcome at any of the groups, at any time and the sessions aim to offer support and information. For more details call Carers Northumberland on: 01670 320025 or email: info@carersnorthumberland.co.uk.

Ponteland: Merton Hall, first Thursday of the month, 10.30am

Ashington: Age UK Northumberland, third Tuesday of the month, 10.30am

Amble: Dry Water Arts Centre, first Tuesday of the month, 10.30am

Felton: Village Hall, first Thursday of the month, 1.30pm

Morpeth: Northumberland County Blind Association, second Wednesday of the month, 10.30am

Bedlington: Salvation Army building, third Wednesday of the month, 1.00pm

Blyth: Buffalo Community Centre, third Thursday of the month, 10.00am

Alnwick: St Paul’s Court, fourth Monday of the month, 1.30pm

Berwick: Community Trust, fourth Wednesday of the month, 11.00am

Hexham: Adapt (NE), fourth Wednesday of the month, 1.30pm

Cramlington: Concordia Leisure Centre, fourth Thursday of the month, 1.00pm

Events

Online event – mental wellbeing support for young people

Are you a parent, carer or someone who is looking for initial support for a child or young person’s mental wellbeing? Perhaps you work with young people and want ideas about what mental health support is available in Northumberland? Come along to our online event on Wednesday 10 March from 10.30am to 11.30am and find out more about Kooth, an online counselling and support service available to all young people aged 11-25 across Northumberland.

Kooth is a safe, confidential and anonymous way for young people to access wellbeing and mental health support through self-help resources and articles, peer support and discussion, and access to fully trained and qualified counsellors until 10pm each night, 365 days per year.

This event is an opportunity to hear more about Kooth from Northumberland’s Kooth Engagement Lead Malcolm Connelly who will give a short presentation and introduction to Kooth, what it involves, how to access it and what you can expect. There will be a Q&A session following the presentation.

Find out more about Kooth here.

If you would like to come along to the event please contact Helen Brown at: helenb@healthwatchnorthumberland.co.uk, or call 03332 408468 to register.

We would also like to hear from young people who are using or have used children’s mental health services in Northumberland so we can understand what is working well and what could be improved. You can share your views here.

Parents, carers and relatives of young people who have used services can also share feedback on our website.

Care homes – keeping in touch with loved ones (online forum)

As we enter a further period where visiting relatives in care homes is restricted, we want to hear how this is affecting you and your loved ones. What information have you had about keeping in touch and maintaining communications about care and wellbeing?

We are particularly keen to hear if you managed to be tested and have an ‘in person’ visit during December.

We would like to know your experience of:

  • Using video calls (FaceTime, Zoom etc) or telephone calls. Does the home support these?  How many times a week and how long?  Does a member of staff help your loved one with the call?
  • Socially distanced visits. Does the home support ‘window’ visits.  How many times a week and how long?
  • How does the home keep you informed about how your loved one is getting on (apart from necessary issues about their care or health). Eg manager updates, photographs, videos
  • Does the home have a programme of group and 1 to 1 activities? Has your loved one taken part?
  • Has the home asked you what, within the current restrictions, would make this time easier?
  • What, within the current restrictions, would make it better for you and your love one?
  • When restrictions are eventually eased (not totally lifted) what would help you and your loved one?

The forum will take place via Zoom. Read our guide on how to use Zoom.

If you would like to take part please contact Laura Haugh: laurah@healthwatchnorthumberland.co.uk, or call 03332 408468.

If you can’t make the forum and would like to tell us your story, or would rather speak to one of our team in confidence please get in touch.

 

online events

Unpaid Carers and Mental Health Online Forum

As we will be unable to get out and about across the county to meet with and listen to people for a while, we’re holding some public online forums, and we’d like you to join us. If you are unable to take part but would like to tell us about your experiences of these services, Caroline and Lesley will be available by phone, text and email each Wednesday between 3.00pm and 4.00pm to listen, answer any questions and help with providing information about services.

The forums will take place via Zoom. Read our guide on how to use Zoom.

The subject of this online forum is unpaid carers and mental health services, so if you’d like to share your experiences of services in the last 12 months, or those of someone close to you, please join us.

If you would like to take part please contact Laura Kane, laurak@healthwatchnorthumberland.co.uk, or call 03332 408468.

 

Find out about our other online forums

 

Carers Rights Day

This year’s Carers Rights Day Information Event from Carers Northumberland is taking place in Ponteland. If you look after someone, then this event will provide everything you need to stay informed and healthy. There will be information stalls around the areas of carers rights, welfare rights, housing, digital skills, energy advice, advocacy, fire and community safety, aids & adaptations and healthcare – our team will be there too with lots of information about health and social care services.

The health MOT area will have lots of information for you around moving and handling, healthy eating, stopping smoking, mental health and GP services, and you can even get your blood pressure checked.

You don’t need to book for this event for carers, just turn up. Call 01670 320025 for more details.

 

Carers Northumberland logo

Carers Week Event

An event for carers across Northumberland from Carers Northumberland. The day will include:

 

Doing Digital: bring your own device and get support to demystify the basics of technology.

Chair yoga: low impact fitness and wellbeing techniques you can do in your own home.

Balloon modelling: try a fun new skill that will impress the children/grandchildren!

Health and wellbeing advice

Attendance Allowance advice

Relaxation Sessions

Therapies: two therapists will be on hand offering massages

 

Lunch and refreshments are included. Places are limited so please book ahead. Transport may be available from the north and west of the county. Call 01670 320025 for bookings and details.

Carers Northumberland

Carers Over 60s Event: Stocksfield

If you’re a carer over 60 you’re invited to a free event from Carers Northumberland, to see what support is on offer. The event is a chance to find out about carers’ rights, have a go at some spring crafts and even take part in the Great Carers Bake Off!

To find out more details contact Sarah or Anne-Marie on 01670 320025 or email info@carersnorthumberland.co.uk. Please book ahead by 25 March. The winner of the Bake Off will receive a prize donated by Branch End Spar.

Carers Northumberland

Carers Over 60s Event: Haltwhistle

If you’re a carer over 60 you’re invited to a free event from Carers Northumberland, to see what support is on offer. The event is a chance to find out about carers’ rights, have a go at some spring crafts and even take part in the Great Carers Bake Off!

To find out more details contact Sarah or Anne-Marie on 01670 320025 or email info@carersnorthumberland.co.uk. Please book ahead by 25 March. The winner of the Bake Off will receive a prize donated by Haltwhistle Coop.

Carers Northumberland

Carers Over 60s Event: Otterburn

If you’re a carer over 60 you’re invited to a free event from Carers Northumberland, to see what support is on offer. The event is a chance to find out about carers’ rights, have a go at some spring crafts and even take part in the Great Carers Bake Off!

To find out more details contact Sarah or Anne-Marie on 01670 320025 or email info@carersnorthumberland.co.uk. Please book ahead by 25 March. The winner of the Bake Off will receive a prize donated by Otterburn Mill.

children playing on grassland

In It Together Annual Conference (Hexham)

This year’s In It Together Parent Carer Forum annual conference is entitled ‘Getting it Right.’ The theme is preparing for adulthood from the earliest years. The event will be of interest to all parents and carers of children and young people with SEND (special educational needs and disabilities) in Northumberland, but particularly those in Year 6 and above.

This year there will be two events in the county. You can book for the Hexham event here.

There is also an event in Alnwick at the Rugby Club on 19 March. More details and bookings here.

For further information about the conference please contact In It Together Parent Carer Forum: info@in-it-together.org.uk or call: 07729192909.

children playing on grassland

In It Together Annual Conference (Alnwick)

This year’s In It Together Parent Carer Forum annual conference is entitled ‘Getting it Right.’ The theme is preparing for adulthood from the earliest years. The event will be of interest to all parents and carers of children and young people with SEND (special educational needs and disabilities) in Northumberland, but particularly those in Year 6 and above.

This year there will be two events in the county. You can book for the Alnwick event here.

There is also an event in Hexham at the Mart on 20 March. More details and bookings here.

For further information about the conference please contact In It Together Parent Carer Forum: info@in-it-together.org.uk or call: 07729192909.