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Corona Kindness

Corona Kindness - Spread kindness, not the virus

Support for Blackpool residents

Blackpool Council has created a way to request help and advice for people in need of support because they or their household are impacted by COVID-19

If you need help

If you have a support network such as family, friends or neighbours, then we urge you to seek their assistance in the first instance.

If you continue to require practical help, support or advice please contact the team who will put you in touch with Blackpool’s well-established local neighbourhood support structures, services from local businesses and voluntary groups.

 

You can call us on 0808 196 3080 from 9.00am to 4.30pm Monday to Friday, email us at helpneeded@blackpool.gov.uk or you can fill in our online form.

Please include your name, a contact number and your address when you email us.

Who we can help

If you or your household are impacted by the COVID-19 crisis, for example if you have been advised to isolate because you have been identified as a contact for someone who has tested positive, or you or someone in the household has symptoms of the virus, we’re here to help.

What we can help with

If you don’t have a support network and you are worried we can help you to organise:

  • Access to food shopping
  • Access to medical supplies/prescriptions
  • Any practical tasks you are worried about

If you are worried about anything that might make it difficult for you to follow the guidance in relation to self-isolation, just get in touch and we can see if we can help.

Help with shopping

Shop local

Many local bakers, butchers, chemists and more offer home deliveries. You should contact them directly to ask about availability. We have produced a list of shops that we know are offering delivery services locally.

We have found that most supermarkets are able to offer a range of delivery slots locally now to all customers. If you have found this difficult, and you would like to access priority slots with your preferred supermarket, you can register for support at the Shielding Support website.

Support for shopping

  • Contact the NHS Volunteer Responders - support can be provided for shopping, picking up your prescriptions or for a regular friendly telephone call on: 0808 196 3646

Well-being

Well-being is always important for everyone, however more so than ever at the moment.  Shielding yourself can be lonely and unvaried, and the information in the news and on social media can make you feel worried or fed-up.

Below is some useful information to help you stay busy and in touch with the world whilst isolating.

Stay connected with others

Maintaining healthy relationships with people you trust is important for your mental wellbeing.

Think about ways to stay in touch with friends and family if you or they must stay at home - by phone, messaging, video calls or social media.

You can also get in touch with one of the many organisations who offer a telephone friendship service, where you can enjoy chatting with someone over the phone from the comfort of your own home.

Blackpool Volunteer Centre 

The BFriend Project has been set up in the wake of Corona Kindness and we are actively taking new referrals now. Our volunteers have been making befriending calls for Corona Kindness since April so we have a good understanding of the need in the community and it would be good to make as many people as possible aware that we are here to support them. 

Referrals/Direct requests to the service can be made by contacting us either by phone: 07483041029 or by email: bfriend@blackpoolvolunteers.org.uk 

Silverline

The Silver Line operates the only confidential, free helpline for older people across the UK that's open 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days of the year. - 0800 4 70 80 90

Counselling in the Community

08081963483, counselling.community@outlook.com

Counselling in the Community is a counselling service aiming to offer adult, children and young persons' counselling services to the Blackpool and the Fylde area.  We hear that some people find it difficult to access mainstream services and private counselling can be costly, this is where we endeavour to help with an accessible and donation based counselling service. We ask for a minimum donation of £5 subject to personal circumstances.

RAF Friendship group

02073073361

At the RAF Benevolent Fund, we are helping older people to access peer support and friendship through our telephone friendship groups in partnership with Age UK. Topics of conversations can range from TV shows and daily life to current affairs and interests.

Each group is different so when you first join we will help you find a group that is right for you. Our groups are safe and confidential and we would never share your details without your permission. You will not be charged for call costs.

If you would be interested in joining one of our telephone friendship groups then please call 0300 222 5703 or email support@rafbf.org.uk.

Blackpool Smile

01253824870 - BlackpoolSmile2010@hotmail.co.uk

Blackpool Smile is a self-help group dedicated to helping and supporting people with a chronic pain condition in the Blackpool, Fylde and Wyre area. 

Talk about your worries

It's normal to feel worried, scared or helpless about the current situation. Remember; it is OK to share your concerns with others you trust, and we would encourage you to do so. You may also find that sharing your concerns may help them too.

If you cannot speak to someone you know or if doing so has not helped, there are plenty of helplines you can try instead.

Look after your body

Physical health has a big impact on how we feel. It can be easy to fall into unhealthy patterns of behaviour that end up making you feel worse.

Try to eat healthy, well-balanced meals, drink enough water and exercise regularly. Avoid smoking, drugs or drinking too much alcohol.  The change4life website has some great tips to help you stay healthy and active during lockdown.

If you are staying at home, you could try exercising indoors, with lots of free online classes. Or try an easy 10-minute home workout.

Lockdown has been a real challenge for most people, and many people have said they have felt an impact on how healthy they feel both physically and emotionally. 

We know that physical exercise is not easy for everyone - particularly if you have underlying health conditions.  There are a number of benefits of physical activity, both physically and for your mental well-being, and regular, proportionate physical activity can help improve your ability to complete daily activities.

We Are Undefeatable is a national Campaign to support the 15 million people who live with one or more long-term health conditions in England. Launched in August 2019, it aims to help those with conditions such as diabetes, cancer, arthritis and Parkinson's to build physical activity into their lives.  

Active Blackpool are delivering an activity programme as part of the We Are Undefeatable campaign aimed at individuals with long term health conditions.  If you would like a leaflet which talks about moving more at home with Long term health conditions and includes a poster with 15 exercise to do at home, or would like to find out more about physical activity opportunities and support available please contact Active Blackpool on 01253 478007 or e-mail  active.blackpool@blackpool.gov.uk.

Active Blackpool's Making Changes team have set you a challenge.  Can you 'Make a change' this March?  Our challenge is about making changes throughout the next 31 days.  Don't worry if you don't start at the beginning of the month, just keep going for 31 days.  The challenge encourages you to eat more healthily, be more active and allows time for your own wellbeing and is covered in more detail in the enclosed .information sheets.  To find out more about how Making Changes can support your family, please email  making.changes@blackpool.gov.uk or call 07467 444656.

Get Out Get Active (GOGA) is a new programme and aims to promote the benefits of being more active through a range of different activities within local communities.  Once our face to face delivery programme is up and running, there will be something for everyone.  Activities will include health walks, social sessions, table tennis, fitness classes, tea & coffee mornings and more.  To find out what opportunities GOGA can offer you, please email  getoutgetactive@blackpool.gov.uk or call 07425 922299.

Carry on doing the things you enjoy

If you are feeling worried, anxious, lonely or low, you may stop doing things you usually enjoy.

Try to focus on your favourite hobby if it is something you can still do at home. Or start a new hobby; read, write, do crosswords or jigsaws, or try drawing and painting. Whatever it is, find something that works for you.

If you cannot think of anything you like doing, try learning something new at home. There are lots of free tutorials and courses online. 

You can still stay social at home by joining others online; book clubs, pub quizzes and music concerts are just a few of the things to try.

Our library team are busy sharing tips, ideas and community events on their Facebook page, and they have lots of resources (eBooks, eAudiobooks, eMagazines and newspapers) that you can access for free, 24/7 from home. We would love for you to drop in and take a look -

Do not stay glued to the news

Try to limit the time you spend watching, reading or listening to coverage of the outbreak, including on social media, and think about turning off breaking-news alerts on your phone.

You could set yourself a specific time to read updates or limit yourself to checking a couple of times a day.

Use trustworthy sources - such as www.gov.uk/coronavirus or www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19 - and fact-check information from the news, social media or other people.

Other support and helplines

Money worries

If you are worried about money, debt or future bills, help is available. 

Financial Support

If you live in rented accommodation or your own home, you may be able to claim Housing or Council Tax Benefit.

If you are on a low or reduced income, we recommend you check with the DWP to see if you're able to claim Universal Credit or any other benefit during this period.

Emergency assistance

The council Discretionary Support Scheme can offer support with food, and gas and electric meter top ups for short term emergencies through the Discretionary Support Scheme.

Blackpool Discretionary Support Scheme  does not cover the following:

  • Short term advances - If you have recently made a claim for benefit and are experiencing a period of financial need before your first payment speak to your local Jobcentre Plus office to see if you qualify
  • Regulated Social Fund (Funeral payments, Sure Start maternity grants, Cold weather payments, winter fuel payments and budgeting loans)

Find out more about the qualifying criteria for a short term advance or a regulated social fund.

You can apply for a  Short Term Advance or a Budgeting loan online or by calling 0800 169 0140.

Help with housing costs

If the amount of Housing Benefit or the housing costs element of your Universal Credit you receive does not cover your full rent  you may be able to apply for a Discretionary Housing Payment (DHP) to help you pay the shortfall. If you need extra help towards your council tax you may qualify for a Council Tax Discretionary Discount.

You will need to complete an online application form and we will look at your personal and financial circumstances.

Additional support

The following information provided by Citizens Advice on benefits and tax credits may be helpful

You could also use this benefits calculator to check for any additional benefits you may be entitled to

Stay in the know

Keep up to date with the latest COVID guidance and Blackpool Council services by following us on social media or subscribing to our newsletter. Any new information will be posted directly through these channels, so if you are following us, you'll be the first to know.

On twitter we are @BpoolCouncil 

On facebook we are /bpoolcouncil