COVID-19 Information

Below are considerations, suggestions and guidance during the COVID-19 pandemic

Domestic Abuse

Here are some considerations and suggestions to consider during the COVID-19 pandemic:

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Check in with someone who you are personally worried about. If making a phone call to a suspected domestic violence victim or survivor, always assume that the perpetrator could be listening in. The same goes for instant messaging services.
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If you suspect that the victim or survivor isn’t able to talk because of being overheard, give them a readily thought out line to end the call, e.g. if it is not safe to speak right now then please repeat after me “I’m sorry there is no one called Tina here, you must have the wrong number.”
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If it is safe to talk when you call, arrange a codeword or phrase that the victim can use if interrupted, e.g. If you need to end the call at any point please say “no, I’m not interested in taking part in your survey.”
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Advise to save useful phone numbers under a pseudonym e.g. IDVA, health visitor, friend.
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Discuss whether they have planned contact with professionals, friends or family who can raise the alarm if they need emergency help.
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Local community beat officers or health visitors could be a source of contact during this time. Is there a regular contact, or can this be introduced?
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During lockdown, people are permitted to leave the house for a number of specific and restricted reasons, such as buying food and for medical appointments. How can these limited freedoms provide opportunity for safe contact between the victim and others?
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Consider useful apps e.g. Hollie Guard which can also offer reassurance and the Bright Sky app is currently available in English, Urdu, Punjabi or Polish and is free to download.
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Share information and plans with multi agency partners of the families that you are concerned about and ask the police to flag in case of a 999 call.

For those people who are experiencing domestic abuse, it is important to know that you are not alone. At this time of writing, you are unable to leave your home, but you can still access support through one of the helplines.

Remember, if you or someone else is in immediate danger, please call 999 and ask for the police!

Silent Solutions: This is a system for victims of domestic abuse who may be afraid of escalating harm if they are overheard when calling 999. When somebody calls 999, an operator will ask which emergency service is required. If the caller is unable to signal to the operator, the call will be forwarded to an operating system. If 55 is pressed by the caller, the system will detect this and the call will be transferred to the relevant police force as an emergency.

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The National Domestic Violence Helpline - 0808 2000 247
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Women's Aid - The website has live chat Mon-Fri 10am-Midnight, or there is an email address to contact.
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Respect - the helpline for male domestic abuse victims - 0808 801 0327
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The Mix - free information and support for under 25s in the UK – 0808 808 4994
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National LGBT+ Domestic Abuse Helpline – 0800 999 5428
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Samaritans (24/7 service) – 116 123
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In an Emergency situation, contact 999

Job-seekers are urged to use the lock-down to plan ahead

Eastbourne employment charity, People Matter, has managed to remain operational during the Coronavirus pandemic, providing information, advice and guidance to job-seekers.  

Our experienced and qualified advisers offer a range of free advice and support services to all job-seekers in Eastbourne and surrounding areas. Our Working for You team works with local employers to match skills, experience and attributes of job-seekers with the person specification and job description of vacant posts.

Since the charity was set up, we have helped over 11,500 people with CV writing services, careers advice, job applications, business start up and mock interviews. Our website (www.people-matter.org.uk) has more details about us and our services. 

Following the enforced closure of its offices in Saffrons Road in mid-March because of Covid-19, People Matter’s experienced team of advisers have been working remotely to continue supporting job-seekers.

This scheme has now operated very successfully for more than a month, with a number of clients finding their way to the charity via social media channels, local media and the Job Centre.

Job-seekers - or someone on their behalf if they don't have the means to do so – are encouraged to email reception@people-matter.org.uk, and their query will be responded to. Alternatively, they can call 07843 190738 and receptionist, Nadine will take their details and ask an adviser to return their call.

The team are encouraging people to get on the “front foot” early before what is sure to be an upsurge in demand as the country emerges from lock-down. Whether it’s creating a new CV or sharpening up an existing one, People Matter’s experienced team can help.

Anyone over the age of 19 – or aged 18 if on Universal Credit – can access People Matter’s services free of charge.

Checklist for Staying at Home

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Food - do you have a way to get food delivered if you need to self-isolate?
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Cleaning - do you have cleaning supplies?
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Work - can you carry on working, including working from home? If not, can you find out your rights to payment or benefits?
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Medication - do you have enough medication, or a way to get more?
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Health - can you reorganise any planned therapy or treatments?
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Connectivity - have you got ways to keep in contact with people you see regularly, like their phone numbers, email addresses? Do you need help setting up digital communication, like a video calling app?
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Routine - can you create a routine or timetable for yourself? And if you live with other people, should you create a household schedule? Do you need to agree how the household will run with everyone at home all day?
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Exercise - is there any physical activity you can do inside your home, like going up and down the stairs, using bean tins as weights, or exercises you can do in your chair?
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Nature - have you thought about how you can bring nature into your home? Can you get some seeds and planting equipment delivered, or put up photos of green spaces?
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Entertainment - have you thought about things to do, books to read or TV shows to watch?
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Relax - have you got materials so you can do something creative, such as pencils and paper?

For more advice follow this link to Mind.org.uk:

Coronavirus and your wellbeing

Staying Safe Online

As a school, we have set work and projects to be completed at home, during this current coronavirus pandemic. This also includes a number of online tasks, through Purple Mash, which I have been pleased to see so many children engage with. In addition to this, we understand that many parents and carers may choose to supplement these activities through support from online companies and in some cases individual tutors. 

As part of our commitment to safeguarding, please can we take this opportunity to remind you of the importance of securing online support from a reputable organisation/individual who can provide evidence that they are safe and can be trusted to have access to children. Also, when using websites for resources or videos through YouTube, we recommend checking the content is suitable before allowing your child to view them. 

Furthermore, below are some online resources, offering support for parents and carers to keep their children safe online. These sites have been recommended in the Governments latest guidance to schools.

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Internet Matters - for support for parents and carers to keep their children safe online
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London Grid for Learning - for support for parents and carers to keep their children safe online
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Net-aware - for support for parents and careers from the NSPCC
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Parent info - for support for parents and carers to keep their children safe online
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Thinkuknow - for advice from the National Crime Agency to stay safe online
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UK Safer Internet Centre - advice for parents and carers

Looking after your own mental health

As well as thinking about the children or young people in your care, it is important to take care of your own mental health and wellbeing. Children and young people react, in part, to what they see from the adults around them. When parents and carers deal with a situation calmly and confidently, they can provide the best support for their children and young people. Parents and carers can be more supportive to others around them, especially children, when they are better prepared.

See guidance on how to look after your mental health and wellbeing during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic or visit Every Mind Matters for clear advice and actions to take care of your mental health and wellbeing.

Citizens Advice Wealden COVID-19 Update

Currently all our drop-in sessions have been suspended. Crowborough, Hailsham & Uckfield offices are closed. If you need advice please call the advice line on 0300 330 9022.

 

We provide free, confidential, independent and impartial advice and campaign on big issues affecting people's lives.

Our goal is to help everyone find a way forward, whatever problem they face. 

We are an independent charity and are part of the Citizens Advice network across England and Wales.

People come to us with all sorts of issues. You may have money, benefit, housing or employment problems, you may be facing a crisis or just considering your options.

We value diversity, promote equality and challenge discrimination wherever we see it.

Helping children and young people cope with stress

There are some key points you can consider about how to support your child or young person, including:

Listen and acknowledge: Children and young people may respond to stress in different ways. Signs may be emotional (for example, they may be upset, distressed, anxious, angry or agitated), behavioural (for example, they may become more clingy or more withdrawn, or they may wet the bed), or physical (for example, they may experience stomach aches).

Look out for any changes in their behaviour. Children and young people may feel less anxious if they are able to express and communicate their feelings in a safe and supportive environment. Children and young people who communicate differently to their peers may rely on you to interpret their feelings. Listen to them, acknowledge their concern and give them extra love and attention if they need it.

MindEd is a free online educational resource on children and young people’s mental health for all adults, which can support parents and carers through these exceptional circumstances.

Provide clear information about the situation: Children and young people want to feel assured that their parents and carers can keep them safe. One of the best ways to achieve this is by talking openly about what is happening and providing honest answers to any questions they have. Explain what is being done to keep them and their loved ones safe, including any actions they can take to help, such as washing their hands more often than usual. Use words and explanations that they can understand. There are resources available to help you do this, including the Children’s Commissioner’s Children’s Guide to Coronavirus, or the Inter-Agency Standing Committee (IASC) have produced a storybook developed by and for children around the world affected by coronavirus (COVID-19).

Make sure you use reliable sources of information such as GOV.UK or the NHS website – there is a lot of misleading information from other sources that can create stress for you and your family. It will not always be possible to provide answers to all the questions that children and young people may ask, or to address all their concerns, so focus on listening and acknowledging their feelings to help them feel supported.

Be aware of your own reactions: Remember that children and young people often take their emotional cues from the important adults in their lives, so how you respond to the situation is very important. It is important to manage your own emotions and remain calm, listen to and acknowledge children and young people’s concerns, speak kindly to them, and answer any questions they have honestly. For further information on how to look after your own mental wellbeing during the pandemic, see the guidance on how to look after your own mental health and wellbeing or visit Every Mind Matters.

Connect regularly: If it is necessary for you and your children to be in different locations to normal (for example, due to staying at home in different locations or hospitalisation) make sure you still have regular and frequent contact via the phone or video calls with them. Try to help your child understand what arrangements are being made for them and why in simple terms. Support safe ways for children and young people to maintain social interaction with their friends, for example via phone or video calls.

Create a new routine: Life is changing for all of us for a while. Routine gives children and young people an increased feeling of safety in the context of uncertainty, so think about how to develop a new routine, especially if they are not at school:

  • make a plan for the day or week that includes time for learning, playing and relaxing
  • if they have to stay home from school, ask teachers what you can do to support continued learning at home. The Department for Education have published a list of recommended online educational resources for home schooling
  • encourage maintaining a balance between being on and offline and discover new ideas for activities to do from home. The Children’s Commissioner guide signposts to some ideas to help fight boredom
  • children and young people ideally need to be active for 60 minutes a day, which can be more difficult when spending longer periods of time indoors. Plan time outside if you can do so safely or see Change4Life for ideas for indoor games and activities
  • don’t forget that sleep is important for mental and physical health, so try to keep to existing bedtime routines
  • it may be tempting to give children and young people treats such as sweets or chocolate but this is not good for their health, especially as they may not be as physically active as normal. See Change4Life for ideas for healthy treats

Limit exposure to media and talk more about what they have seen and heard: Like adults, children and young people may become more distressed if they see repeated coverage about the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic in the media. A complete news blackout is also rarely helpful as they are likely to find out from other sources, such as online or through friends. Try to avoid turning the television off or closing web pages when children or young people come into the room. This can peak their interest to find out what is happening and their imagination can take over. Instead, consider limiting the amount of exposure you and your family have to media coverage.

Young people will also hear things from friends and get information from social media. Talk to them about what is happening and ask them what they have heard. Try to answer their questions honestly and reassure them appropriately.

 

For more guidance on supporting children and young peoples mental health and wellbeing during the Coronavirus pandemic follow this link:-

Helping children and young people cope with stress

Online learning platform to boost workplace skills launched

Free courses are available through the new online platform, the Skills Toolkit. This platform signposts to free, high-quality digital and numeracy courses to help people build up their skills, progress in work and boost their job prospects and confidence whilst at home.

Courses on offer cover a range of levels, from everyday maths and the use of email and social media at work to more advanced training. All courses are available online and are flexible so that people can work through them at their own pace.

 

The Skills Toolkit can be accessed here:

theskillstoolkit.campaign.gov.uk

Other Information

Covid 19:
Addendum to the ESCC

Connect with us

Grovelands School, Dunbar Drive,
Hailsham, East Sussex, BN27 3UW.

Staff Contacts

  • Headteacher: Mr Jon Goulding
  • School Secretary: Mrs Carol Williams
  • Chair of Governors: Mr Paul Young
  • Designated Safeguarding Lead:  Mrs M McKay
  • Inclusion Leader: Ms C Adams
  • Deputy DSLs:  Miss K Swaine, Ms C Adams,
    Mr J Goulding

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