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COVID-19 Information

Along with many of you,e UK Gloucestershire has had to reconfigure the way we deliver support to Gloucestershire’s older people.

 

We are currently providing support in 3 main ways:

 

Supporting Older People to resolve specific issues:

 

  • Our Help Team are available Monday – Friday 9am – 4pm to help older people resolve specific problems.  We have up to date information about local resources and support.  Call us on 01452 422660 to access the Help Team, or email essentialinfo@ageukgloucestershire.org.uk to let us know about essential services you are offering locally.

 

  • Our Out of Hospital Team continues to support older people recently discharged from hospital who need guidance to stay well at home through in depth welfare calls.

 

 

Supporting Older People to stay connected:

 

  • We recognise that social isolation and the associated wellbeing issues are a real and serious issue for older people. We have set up a new Freephone telephone number for people who are alone and who want to have a friendly conversation with a staff member or volunteer.  Call us on 0800 2980579, Monday – Friday 9am – 4pm

 

  • Look out for our Greet Your Street Campaign.  We are encouraging everyone to make a cup of tea, open your windows or front door and Greet Your Street at 11am every day.  Wave, smile, say hello to your neighbours, share a joke, reassurance and stay connected, just remember to stay at least 2 metres apart.

 

  • We are compiling tips from our Older People’s Springboard Groups about how to stay connected, including virtual ‘Get Connected’ workshops and one-to-one telephone support to help older people make the most of the resources and social opportunities access to technology can offer.  Call 07511 223995 to find out more.

 

Support for Communities who want to help:

 

  • Signposting individuals to existing local groups, and central hub resources.

 

  • Support and advice for local community groups to support older people safely and effectively.

Advice on Working from Home

Advice on Working from Home


Hopefully you are finding these Covid-19 related messages of use.  Here is a little information regarding working from home and also also a reminder of where you can find more and the latest reliable information.

Well being
https://mentalhealth.org.uk/coronavirus
Current advice from the NHS
https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/
Latest news from Public Health England (PHE)
https://www.gov.uk/government/organisations/public-health-england
Latest news from the Government
https://www.gov.uk/coronavirus
Coronavirus Q&A from the World Health Organisation
https://www.who.int/news-room/q-a-detail/q-a-coronaviruses
Latest advice on social distancing/isolation from the Government
https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/covid-19-guidance-on-social-distancing-and-for-vulnerable-people

Guidance for employees, employers and businesses: The government has issued updated information on healthcare advice for employers and support for businesses.
https://www.gov.uk/government/news/coronavirus-covid-19-guidance-for-employees-employers-and-businesses

Hardship fund: The government has confirmed a £500 million hardship fund will provide council tax relief for vulnerable households.
https://www.gov.uk/government/news/government-confirms-500-million-hardship-fund-will-provide-council-tax-relief-for-vulnerable-households

Updates

Covid-19 Update

In response to the Covid-19 pandemic, the Forest of Dean Baby Bank is changing how baby items are being distributed to those in financial crisis. This will remain in force until further notice at which point we will return to our normal operation.

 

We are able to offer roughly a week’s supply of Nappies, Wipes, Baby Food (including some formula) and Toiletries such as Shampoo, Baby Oil(Limited supply). Our Children’s Clothing Cupboard division is not operating until further notice.

 

With effect from Friday 27th March 2020, the Forest of Dean Baby Bank will operate a delivery service in conjunction with The Forest Foodbank. This service is to protect everyone from close contact during the period of this pandemic.

 

To access these services, there will be a dedicated phone line for all baby bank requests either from people needing baby items or for agencies helping those in need. These phone lines are set up for the following post code areas.

GL15 – 07468 573176– Line open 2pm-4pm Wednesdays

GL16 – 07468 573176 – Line open 2pm-4pm Mondays

GL14 & GL17 – 07468 573176- Line open 9.30am -11.30am Fridays

 

Please note that calls to this phone lines outside of the times specified will not be answered.

 

The operator will ask questions regarding details of the claimant. All calls are strictly confidential.

We will aim to deliver baby bank parcels within 24 hours of the request. This will be dependent on the number requests made during each session. It may take a longer during periods of high demand.

For GL15 Postcodes, the deliveries will be made between 1pm & 4pm on Thursdays.

For GL16 Postcodes, the deliveries will be made between 1pm & 4pm on Tuesdays.

For GL14/17 Postcodes, the deliveries will be made between 1pm and 4pm on Friday or 9am-12am on Saturday.

 

The parcel will be left on the doorstep and our driver will knock but will not have any contact with the person receiving the items. It is up to the individual to be at home to receive the parcel, if not, it will be left at the door.

 

PLEASE NOTE: This service is for people in financial crisis who can’t afford to buy baby items, It is not intended for people who are self-isolating but can afford baby items. In those cases please contact the Gloucestershire Community Help Hub on 01452 583519 for support.

https://www.gloucestershire.gov.uk/gloucestershires-community-help-hub

 

Please bear in mind that this is a new process run by volunteers so please bear with us

The Forest of Dean Baby Bank would like to thank all volunteers and donors for their support during this difficult period.

 

Donations during Covid-19 crisis

We are totally reliant on the help and support of our community to provide the Baby Bank with Baby Items and financial donations.

The opportunity to provide Baby Items donations is now very limited with the closure of many of the places where our collection bins are located – please see our Facebook Page for the current List

We have set up an Amazon Wish list, but most things seem to be out of stock anyway!

We are in desperate need of donations as the situation worsens and we are therefore appealing for any donations to be made in money.

If you are able to donate, we are able to accept donations using the following methods:-

·         Cheques made payable to The Forest of Dean Baby Bank and sent to The Treasurer, Forest of Dean Baby Bank, 12 Hillside Close, Bream GL15 6LU

·         BACs transfers are also most welcome. Sort code 30-96-26 Account Number 55443368

 

Keep safe everyone

 

Covid-19 Update

In response to the Covid-19 pandemic, the Forest Foodbank is changing how food is being distributed to those in financial crisis. This will remain in force until further notice at which point we will return to our normal operation run from our 3 distribution centres.

With effect from Friday 27th March 2020, the Forest Foodbank will operate a delivery service. This service is to protect everyone from close contact during the period of this pandemic.

In addition to the delivery service, the Lydney Town Council have agreed to act as a partner to the Forest Foodbank and will run a collection point for people who are not in self-isolation. This will operate from the Lydney Community Centre, Naas Lane, GL15 5AT on Thursdays from 2pm to 4pm and is not open outside those hours.

To access these services, there will be dedicated phone lines for all food requests either from people needing food or for agencies helping those in need. These phone lines are set up for the following post code areas.

GL15 – 07391 001217 – Line open 2pm-4pm Wednesdays

GL16 – 07387 502240 – Line open 2pm-4pm Mondays

GL14 & GL17 – 07553 611294 - Line open 9.30am -11.30am Fridays

Please note that calls to these phone lines outside of the times specified will not be answered.

The operator will ask questions regarding details of the claimant. All calls are strictly confidential and operators have signed a non-disclosure agreement and we comply with data protection legislation.

We will aim to deliver food parcels within 24 hours of the request. This will be dependent on the number requests made during each session. It may take a longer during periods of high demand.

For GL15 Postcodes, the deliveries will be made between 1pm & 4pm on Thursdays. For GL16 Postcodes, the deliveries will be made between 1pm & 4pm on Tuesdays. For GL14/17 Postcodes, the deliveries will be made between 1pm and 4pm on Friday or 9am-12am on Saturday.

The parcel will be left on the doorstep and our driver will knock but will not have any contact with the person receiving the food. It is up to the individual to be at home to receive the parcel, if not, it will be left at the door.

PLEASE NOTE: This service is for people in financial crisis who can’t afford to buy food. It is not intended for people who are self-isolating but can afford food. In those cases please contact the Gloucestershire Community Help Hub on 01452 583519 for support.

https://www.gloucestershire.gov.uk/gloucestershires-community-help-hub

Please bear in mind that this is a new process run by volunteers so please bear with us

The Forest Foodbank would like to thank all volunteers, donors, and the Lydney Town Council for their support during this difficult period.

 

 

 

Donations during Covid-19 crisis

We are totally reliant on the help and support of our community to provide the Foodbank with food and financial donations.

The opportunity to provide food donations is now very limited with the closure of many of the places where our collection bins are located.

We are in desperate need for food as the situation worsens and we are therefore appealing for any donations to be made in money.

The limit on the amount of food that can be purchased does not apply to the Foodbank and we are permitted to buy in bulk to replenish our supplies.

If you are able to donate, please visit our Facebook page and use the donate button where you can gift aid or on our website to make your donations, alternatively:

·         Cheques made payable to Forest Foodbank and sent to Coleford Baptist Church, Newland Street, GL16 8AN.

·         BACs transfers are also most welcome. Sort code 08-92-99 Account 65592621

 

Forest of Dean District Council

 

 

COVID-19: businesses update 31 March

 

 

We are here to help

“Hello I’m Cllr Bernie O'Neill and I'm part of the cabinet at Forest of Dean District Council. I’m responsible for supporting local businesses and jobs and the Forest Economic Partnership. I also look after local development, governance, infrastructure and regeneration. With COVID-19 taking over our lives right now I’d like to reassure local businesses that we’re hard at work getting the government grants out to you.

In this edition of the newsletter you will find some more information about how this is happening. Please know that your council is here for you and we will continue to support you during this time, a situation none of us has experienced before, and we want to make it through this together.”

 

 

Business grants are on their way

The Government funding schemes for the small businesses and the retail, hospitality and leisure grants are now live. The Government has committed to the automatic and immediate payment of these grants without businesses being required to apply. 
 
However, we do still need some very basic information in order to make the payments and have created a simple form that businesses need to complete.  We have written to all eligible businesses with this form but we have also made it available to download from our website to help speed things up. If your business meets the eligibility criteria, please complete the form and return it by email to council.tax@fdean.gov.uk. Any delay in providing this information could lead to a delay in payment so please return it promptly.
 
We will process the grant payments as quickly as possible. During this time our team will be exceptionally busy and it would be helpful if you could refer to our website for updates and, apart from submitting the form, only contact us by email if really urgent.

 

Form for business grants

 

 

April's business rates payments deferred

The council will not be collecting any business rates payments by direct debit during April 2020 to help ease business cashflow concerns. Instead, this payment will be deferred until all appropriate reliefs and grants have been applied. For those businesses that pay their business rates from April to January, this change will mean that payment instalments will move from May to February.  The deferral will take place automatically - no action is required from businesses.

 

 

Guidance on the Job Retention Scheme

Detailed guidance about claiming reimbursement for workers' wages through the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme has been published. As a reminder, this is the scheme that will pay 80% of wages up to £2,500 per month. This applies to employees who have been asked to stop working, but who are being kept on the pay roll, otherwise described as ‘furloughed workers’. 

The scheme will be administered by HMRC and it is expected to be available by the end of April 2020. Businesses with immediate cashflow issues should get support from the Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme.

 

See the guidance for the Job Retention Scheme

 

Gloucestershire LEP support for businesses

For local businesses with any questions at this difficult time the GFirst LEP can provide expert advice and support via their Growth Hub. They are encouraging businesses based in Gloucestershire to complete their COVID-19 survey which asks about the impact on your business.

 

Send an enquiry to the Growth Hub

 

 

Support if the council is your landlord

To help businesses manage their cash flow Forest of Dean District Council has agreed to defer rent for all occupiers for three months and defer all rent reviews for six months. We have written to all our business tenants confirming these arrangements.

 

 

Licensing support for businesses

Those with a premises license (e.g. pubs) will be allowed to defer their annual license fee payment for six months. This will limit expenditure while your premises remain closed and avoid the more costly option of applying for a new license when restrictions are lifted.
 
For all other types of licence renewals that require a fee (e.g. taxi and private hire drivers, street traders, animal establishments) we will offer a 12 month direct debit scheme for anyone wishing to re-licence in the next six months rather than paying the full fee upfront. Or you can defer renewal for up to six months (licences must be in place if you are trading) 

For enquiries about this email ers@fdean.gov.uk or call 01594 810000.

 

 

Arts Council Emergency Response Package

The Arts Council has announced a £160 million emergency response package to support individuals and organisations across the cultural sector in response to the Covid-19 crisis.  The package announced comprises:

  • £90 million for for National Portfolio Organisations (NPOs)
  • £50 million for organisations outside of the National Portfolio
  • £20 million for creative practitioners and cultural workers

There is further detail of these emergency funds on the Arts Council's website.

 

Forest of Dean Community Resilience Fund

Forest of Dean Covid-19
Community Resilience Fund

We are delighted to launch the Forest of Dean Community Resilience Fund on behalf of Gloucestershire County Council and the Forest of Dean District Council.

The purpose of the fund is to support voluntary and community groups that are supporting vulnerable people and communities during the Covid-19 crisis. This fund will aim to cover additional costs incurred due to this response and support innovative grassroots projects with the intention of keeping people safe and well throughout this challenging time.


Community and Voluntary Groups (constituted and unconstituted), Community Interest Companies and Registered Charities can apply for up to £1,000. 

The application form can be downloaded below. For further information and guidance, please e-mail CEO@FVAF.org.uk 
 

Application Form
 


 

Keeping Children Safe...

 

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Glos Safeguarding Children Exec

Help us keep children safe

**You have been sent this information as you are signed up to the GSCE ‘alert’ system**

Keeping children safe

 

Help us keep children safe from abuse and neglect. Just because children are out of sight, it doesn’t mean they are out of harms way. Right now, it is even more difficult to spot the signs of abuse or neglect and it can be difficult to know for sure if something is happening at home.

 

Some of the signs you may spot include:

  • aggressive or repeated shouting
  • hearing hitting or things being broken
  • children crying for long periods of time
  • very young children left alone or are outdoors by themselves
  • children looking dirty or not changing their clothes
  • children being withdrawn or anxious.

Contact the MASH

If you are concerned about a child, please contact the Multi Agency Safeguarding Hub (MASH) on 01452 426565 or complete a Multi Agency Referral Form.

For more information on reporting concerns and signs of abuse, please go to https://www.gloucestershire.gov.uk/health-and-social-care/children-young-people-and-families/covid-19-help-us-keep-children-safe-from-abuse-and-neglect/

You can also help us by following us on Twitter and Facebook and sharing our messages.

GCC Guidance: Emergency Living Fund 

GCC Guidance: Emergency Living Fund...

We are pleased to confirm that the GCC emergency living fund is now live. This provides enhanced support for families on welfare and is a part of a 40% increase in funding that GCC is providing to support people through the COIVD-19 outbreak. More information on eligibility and application can be found here. We would appreciate it if you could share this with your families so that those eligible do not miss out  

 

https://www.gloucestershire.gov.uk/health-and-social-care/gloucestershire-welfare-support-scheme