As school finishes for the summer holiday and formal learning is on hold until we return in September, it is really important that students and their families take some time to rest and prepare for the year ahead.
A great way to do that is to make the most of our natural environment around us. Use this Thrive with Nature guide for lots of ideas.
Thrive with Nature Guide
Mental Health Foundation: thriving with nature – a guide for everyone. Making the most of the UK’s natural spaces for our mental health and wellbeing. https://www.mentalhealth.org.uk/campaigns/thriving-with-nature/guide?bblinkid=230928975&bbemailid=22797689&bbejrid=1555407645
Finding Childcare and Summer Provision
The school summer break starts soon with term ending on Friday 17 July. If you need to find childcare then you should be able to find out what is available on the Pinpoint Site. If you are unable to find childcare then you can complete the Unable to Find Childcare Form and the Early years team will then arrange for one of their team to contact you. Please note that updated information on childcare settings that will be open in the Summer holidays will also be posted on the Devon County Council website soon. Please note this is parent funded provision.
Returning to school
The links below lead to some online resources which may be helpful to students and their parents in preparing for the return to school following lockdown:
Online Learning and Safety
Parent Zone Hub
There is now a new hub for parents from Parent Zone, designed to give families the tools to make the most of technology throughout the holidays:
- fun, free activities
- a fortnightly parent bulletin
- 'Be Internet Legends' livestreams
- a digital noticeboard – for sharing Instagram posts and more
- expert online safety advice
The SafeToNet Foundation is providing one million free-for-life licenses of the SafeToNet mobile safety app for UK families in order to help keep the nation’s children safe online.
The app uses artificial intelligence to safeguard children as they use their mobile device, while protecting privacy, by detecting threats such as bullying and sexting as they happen.
Parents and carers can register their details through the GOV.UK online safety page before 1 August, and they must activate the app before the end of August. Further details can be found on the SafeToNet website.
Think U Know Resources
Children love to socialise and as they get older, they will want to stay in touch with their friends online. This is the final activity pack from Think U Know for parents and carers to deliver to their children; it explores how they can stay safe while connecting with others on social media apps and platforms:
Home Activity Packs for 11 - 13 years
Home Activity Packs for age 14+
Papyrus UK - Support for young people thinking about suicide HopeLine 0800 068 4141 https://papyrus-uk.org/
Tiverton Youth Services and Virtual Youth Club https://spacepsm.org/
Child Bereavement UK 0800 02 888 40 https://www.childbereavementuk.org/
ChatHealth 07520 631722
- ChatHealth is a text service for young people aged 13-19 at secondary school to reach out to the School Nurse team for confidential advice on a wide range of issues such as bullying, emotional health and wellbeing, sexual health as well as illnesses.
Kooth - online support including online counselling https://www.kooth.com/
Young Devon - face to face counselling (via video call at the moment) https://www.youngdevon.org/what-we-do/mental-health-well-being
The Mix 0808 808 4994 (Freephone)
- The Mix provides safe and confidential group chat and discussion boards, plus messaging support service and telephone counselling for young people under 25. You can visit the website, call the freephone number, or if you need help immediately you can also text The Mix on their crisis messenger text service which provides free, 24/7 crisis support across the UK. If you’re aged 25 or under, and are experiencing any painful emotion or are in crisis, you can text THEMIX to 85258.
- Young Minds offer lots of stuff for young people specifically around coping with lockdown/coming out of lockdown. They also have a crisis messenger providing free 24/7 crisis support across the UK if you are experiencing a mental health crisis, If you need urgent help text YM to 85258 https://youngminds.org.uk/find-help/looking-after-yourself/coronavirus-and-mental-health/
ChildLine 0800 1111 - phone lines open 24/7/365
- Remember this service offers lots of helpful advice and support and isn’t just a ‘report it’ service.
- Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS) CAMHS are offering additional crisis support during coronavirus. If a child or young person (under 18) is experiencing a mental health crisis, you can now access CAMHS 24/7. Please contact 03300 245 321 during normal hours (8am-5pm, Mon to Fri) or 0300 555 5000 outside these hours. Callers will speak to a call handler, their call will then be forwarded to a voicemail service and their message will be returned within one hour.
School Nurse and Health Visiting HUB
- Support and advice is available all through the holidays, Monday to Friday 9am - 5pm, for parents and families. This is for both physical and mental health including support around anxiety and sleep. Tel: 0333 234 1904 or E mail: dcc.EasternPHNhub@nhs.net
Short for time? But still looking for help and advice?
BBC Bitesize Support
Whether you’re moving to secondary school, jumping into the world of work, starting a new relationship or just feeling a bit stressed, BBC Bitesize asked those who’ve been through it to share their wisdom and all their videos can be found here: https://www.bbc.co.uk/bitesize/support
CBBC is more than just TV programmes. Check out their puzzles, games, quizzes, news reports and chat forums to keep you occupied during the summer holidays: https://www.bbc.co.uk/cbbc
Support for families with autistic children and those with ADHD
- Bitesize videos from Children and Families Health Devon to help families and professionals recognise and support children with ASD. These are now available in the resources area of the following link. https://childrenandfamilyhealthdevon.nhs.uk/autistic-spectrum-disorder/
- Babcock have also collated some useful information and resources which can be found here: https://www.babcockldp.co.uk/campaigns/coronavirus-support-for-schools-parents-and-pupils/links-for-home-schooling-resources-and-activities/communication-and-interaction
- Cygnet Parent Autism Awareness Programme – July-August 2020 for parents with children who have already been diagnosed with autism, or are on the pathway for assessment: https://www.babcockldp.co.uk/disadvantaged-vulnerable-learners/send/communication-and-interaction/parents-and-carers/cygnet-parent-autism-awareness-programme-july-august-2020
- BisNet - Online webinars and live chats for parents plus free regular podcast on how to support your autistic child: https://www.cedaonline.org.uk/bis-net
- Exploring stress and anxiety with children using visual techniques: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UUCWWu2F_9E&feature=youtu.be
- New resources are available from Children and Family Health Devon, for parents and carers with a child with Autism Spectrum Disorder (whether they have a diagnosis or not). To access these resources, please visit the website: https://childrenandfamilyhealthdevon.nhs.uk/autistic-spectrum-disorder/
If your financial situation has changed due to the pandemic, you may be entitled to Free School Meals. Please follow the links below to find out more:
Somerset - https://www.somerset.gov.uk/education-and-families/free-school-meals or phone 0300 123 2224
There are several local food banks that are still operating. Even if you have never used a food bank before, you may find yourself currently needing help. This might be because you have experienced unexpected changes due to lockdown, you are in isolation or you are waiting for Universal Credit. If you, or someone you know, are experiencing hardship which makes it hard to afford food, our local food banks may be able to help.
- Cullompton and surrounding villages of Willand, Uffculme, Bradnich and Kentisbeare: People Matter is a group at St Andrew’s Church which organises the food bank serving these areas. Phone 01884 33249. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: https://standrewscullompton.com/getting-involved/serving-others/people-matter
- Tiverton and Surrounding Area: CHAT (Churches Housing Action Team) organises the food bank in Tiverton. Phone: 01884 255 606 (between 10am and 12 noon) Website: https://chatmid.org/foodbank/
- Taunton: Taunton Food Bank - Phone: 07761 624 216 Email: email@example.com Website: https://taunton.foodbank.org.uk
Please note that in most cases the food banks' usual referral/voucher system has been currently suspended. However, if you do need a referral, or you do not live in any of the above areas, please contact Mrs Balado - Email: BaladoK@uffculmeschool.net or Phone 01884 842919
The outbreak of the Coronavirus has seen an increase in scams and doorstep traders who are trying to exploit fear and uncertainty during this difficult time. As individuals and communities, we urge you to keep safe and vigilant in the current environment and look out for scams in your neighbourhood, which often target elderly and vulnerable people. Please click on the link to view a useful information and advice poster on how to keep safe: Scam Aware Poster
Trading Standards have advised that in the current economic climate there has been an increase in loan shark activity and have they have received an increase in calls to their national hotline. The lockdown means that many may experience financial trouble. During times like these, people can be extremely vulnerable and at risk of being taken advantage of. If you're unsure of a lender, do not use them. The helpline is open 24/7 on 0300 555 2222
‘Stop Loan Sharks’ have put together a resource pack to help people who are experiencing financial difficulties. The resource pack can be found at: https://www.stoploansharks.co.uk/warning-issued-over-loan-sharks-during-covid-19-pandemic/