Coronavirus

 

Non-clinical volunteers are needed to support North Tyneside’s mass vaccination programme!

The new Covid-19 vaccine is now being rolled-out in North Tyneside in four mass vaccination sites across the borough. A dedicated team of NHS health professionals, aided by volunteers from across North Tyneside, is working together to deliver the Pfizer/ BioNTech vaccine to the most vulnerable groups (> 80 year olds first) in this initial community phase of the COVID-19 Vaccination Programme rollout.

VODA is recruiting non-clinical volunteers to support the health professionals to help with the smooth running of the site and ensure the safety of the people attending and working there.

The volunteering roles include helping to steward people safely round the centres and take the role of door attendants to help manage the flow of people. They are looking for people who are calm, patient and reliable and are able to spare some time to help out.

Download the flyer or find out more at: https://voda.org.uk/covid19-massvaccination/.

 

 

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Northumberland Community Voluntary Action is again working with the Community Foundation to help you be ready and apply for grants to this fund. If you are eligible, grants are available of between £750 and £10,000.

 

Northumberland CVA’s FREE support can offer:

  • A ‘health check’ of your governance, policies and procedures
  • Support to access the North Steads and Sisters Wind Farm Community Fund
  • Signposting to other training and workshops
  • Bid writing workshop
  • Be part of a local network of community groups
  • Help to get new groups, ideas and projects off the ground

 

What can you use the funding for?

  • The fund is very flexible:
  • If you have been impacted by COVID- 19 then core costs or running costs can be funded
  • Any adaptions or improvements needed to run activities within current restrictions
  • Delivery of existing or development of new community responses and services
  • Expanding digital inclusion in your community
  • Developing a project idea that requires consultancy, design, or technical support
  • Arts / creative activities, family-focused support, community events, developing community assets, educational or training activities.

 

Who can apply?

Constituted community groups, charities, start-up social enterprises, parish councils (Previous applicants will be considered).

 

Eligible communities within 3km:

  • Hadston
  • Red Row
  • South Broomhill
  • Stobswood
  • West Chevington
  • Widdrington
  • Widdrington Station

 

Eligible communities within 5km:

  • Acklington
  • Broomhill
  • Cresswell
  • East Thirston
  • Ellington
  • Eshott
  • Linton
  • Togston
  • Tritlington
  • Ulgham

 

To find out more:

For further information, and to express an interest please contact:  Martin Conway, Northumberland CVA

Tel: 01670 858 688

Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Supported by: The Community Foundation Tyne & Wear and Northumberland

 

Community Foundation

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New research commissioned by the seven North East councils reveals how people across the region feel about Covid-19 and local restrictions - with over half admitting that while they want to follow the rules, they ‘find it hard’ to stick to social distancing guidelines.  

The research, involving a representative sample of residents from County Durham, Gateshead, Newcastle, North Tyneside, Northumberland, South Tyneside and Sunderland asked residents how they feel about the current situation and what the impact is on their lives now that the region is in Tier 3.   

Key findings include:   

71% of North East residents are ‘very worried’ about the UK-wide Covid situation 

  • Over half of residents say they want to stick with social distancing guidelines but find it hard  
  • 1 in 3 find it hard to stick to household mixing rules 
  • Over a quarter of residents forget to follow social distancing rules  
  • 15% admit to deliberately bending the rules  
  • The overriding emotion felt by residents is ‘frustration’ with 50% feeling this way.

 The results have informed a major communications campaign which launches today (Wednesday 9 December), backed by the seven local councils and supported by Northumbria and County Durham Local Resilience Forums (LRF) which includes councils, third sector, NHS, blue light services and public transport bodies.  

With infection rates falling across the region and the majority of people adhering to public health and government guidance, the campaign thanks residents across the North East for all that they have done to support our communities and urges them to keep going. Local people were consulted as part of the process and contributed to the development of the campaign.   Despite the national lockdown lifting last Wednesday and Britain’s medicines regulator, the MHRA approving the Pfizer/BioNTech coronavirus vaccine people are being urged not to throw away all the good work by being complacent in the run up to and during Christmas.   Commenting on behalf of the seven North East Local Authorities, director of public health for County Durham and chair of the Association of Directors of Public Health North East, Amanda Healy said; “I want to thank the people of the North East for all they have done to slow the virus in our region. Residents have continued to do their bit throughout the pandemic and the fact our infection rates are falling in all areas is testament to the perseverance shown by our communities.   “But the research findings confirm that while people want to follow the rules, we all find social distancing in particular hard. Asking family and friends to socially distance for such a prolonged period is not an easy ask, but minimising close contact remains a huge factor in stopping the spread of the virus. The new campaign for our region comes at a critical time and reminds us all to keep going.  “The vaccine gives us hope but implementing the mass immunisation programme is not going to happen overnight. As Christmas approaches, it is time for celebration, but we’ve got to continue to exercise caution so that we don’t undermine all the hard work and sacrifice made to lower the R rate.  
“Winter is the busiest time of year for our hospitals and Covid adds additional pressures.   Not only that - by keeping going we protect our children’s education, our businesses, our vulnerable, the voluntary and charity sector and our NHS. By continuing to all do our bit, I hope we can return to some kind of normality sooner, rather than later.”   Brenda Naisby, from Washington, Sunderland features in the campaign. She said; “I’m on my own, in a bubble with my daughter. I have found the lockdowns very hard, particularly as I got to the end of the 12 weeks, the isolation was really getting to me. I wanted to hug my daughter and hold my grandchildren, it was heartbreaking.   “I wanted to be part of the campaign and thank the people of the North East because I think as a region we’ve done so well at sticking to the rules, but we’ve got to keep going. I’m 80 in February and I am hoping to celebrate with my friends and family and a glass of champagne. I really do hope that is possible.” 

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Centre for Sustainable Energy is launching the ‘energise your community consultation’ on behalf of the Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) and Local Authorities in the North East. They are keen to understand how they can better support the Voluntary Community and Social Enterprise sector in the North East to tackle climate change and build more resilient communities through their support for community energy.  They are keen to hear your interests and views whether or not you have previous experience in community energy.

All the information they receive will be used to answer the questions that the Local Enterprise Partnership and Local Authorities have posed: what are the structures, mechanisms, models and support that would enable the successful development and delivery of community energy projects in the North East LEP area?

To share your views follow this survey link (it will take approximately 10-15 minutes to complete): https://www.smartsurvey.co.uk/s/HV11QZ/

 

 

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COVID-19 has had a devastating effect on the labour market and more and more people are struggling to find work. Now workless people in South East Northumberland can book a place on our next 6-week SkillsUNeed course to increase their chances of success in applying for jobs.  Sessions start on 13th January at the YMCA, Ashington. To keep people safe from coronavirus, places are limited.

With funding from the Coalfields Regeneration Trust, Northumberland CVA's Skills4U support sessions will help people develop the vital skills they need to make sure they are in the running for the jobs that are out there.

SkillsUNeed is a 6-week course. Sessions will take place once a week, every Wednesday for 6 weeks, until 17th February. Each socially-distanced session will last for around 6 hours. Lunch and refreshments will be provided, although we are unable to provide travel expenses. Participants will learn how to:

  • Write the perfect CV
  • Carry out effective job searches
  • Complete engaging application forms
  • Learn how to be successful at interview
  • Prepare for work
  • Manage on a budget

We will also have guest speakers talking about topics such as benefits entitlement, further education courses, free training, careers advice and living a healthy lifestyle.

If you work with someone who would benefit from these sessions, or are interested in coming along yourself, please contact our Project Support Worker, Sarah Tate. Simply email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., or call/text at 07826 547 731 and Sarah will get in touch for a chat about the sessions and what to expect.

All appropriate COVID-19 precautions will be in place to ensure the safety of participants. Social distancing means we are able to offer limited spaces so it is first come, first served.

 

 

 

Christmas singers

 

Karbon Homes is looking to bring some Christmas cheer to its residents living in its Sheltered Schemes across Northumberland and would like to hear from musical volunteers. 

Unlike previous years when choirs and soloists have been able to give concerts within the schemes, this year things will have to be done a little bit differently. Karbon Homes is looking for local choirs, musicians or singers who would be willing to give a short concert for residents outside of the Schemes which are located in Blyth, Lynemouth, Morpeth and Alnwick.

If you are interested in volunteering to bring some musical merriment please contact our Volunteering Officer at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

 

 

Church of England

 

 

The Church of England is carrying out a second nationwide review of potential cases of abuse within the church, for the first time focusing on both children and vulnerable adults. This review will be making sure that all recent and non-recent safeguarding concerns have been dealt with properly.

 

Within the Diocese of Newcastle, the Bishop of Newcastle, the Right Reverend Christine Hardman has appointed two independent reviewers to study all cases where safeguarding concerns about anyone in the church have been reported, and whether the appropriate measures were taken as a result. In addition every clergy file is being reviewed.

 

The independent reviewers are keen to hear from anyone who may have experienced abuse within the church and their contact details are further down this page.

 

The Church of England wants to make churches and church related activities as safe as possible for everyone, particularly children and vulnerable adults. It wants to learn from past mistakes by listening to those who have experienced abuse.

 

The House of Bishops has ordered the Church of England to launch Past Cases Review 2 (PCR2) and as part of this, all clergy are being asked if any and all concerns raised with them about anyone in their parish in the past have been reported and if these concerns were investigated in line with national guidance.

 

Bishop Christine said: “A previous Past Cases Review by the Church of England in 2008 focused on non-recent cases involving children, but this current review is far more wide ranging, looking at both children and vulnerable adults. Where any safeguarding concerns have been raised about anyone holding a church office, we’re making sure they were handled and dealt with properly. If we find that they weren’t, we will act accordingly and learn from any mistakes.

 

“We want our churches to be safe and trusted places for everyone. This current review is about being transparent and honest, learning if and where mistakes were made and listening to those who have suffered as a result. To those who have experienced abuse and do not wish to engage with the Church of England anymore, we appeal to them too to contact our independent reviewers or the NSPCC Helpline and help us learn from their experiences.”

 

Anyone wishing to contribute to this PCR2 process or who may wish to come forward and make disclosures regarding church-related abuse should contact the Diocese of Newcastle’s independent reviewers:

 

  • This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 
  • This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 

Alternatively, anyone can ring a dedicated telephone helpline – 0800 80 20 20 – which is operated independently from the Church of England by the NSPCC. The Diocesan Safeguarding Adviser Carol Butler can also be contacted by email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or by mobile 07825 167016.

 

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On Wednesday 18th November 2020, we held our online AGM and published our Annual Review 2019-2020. 

The event was a first for us in a lot of ways, for instance:

  • The first time we've held our AGM online (you can view a recording of the AGM via the link at the bottom of this page)
  • The first time we've hosted an online event with so many attendees (56 people attended)
  • The first time we've organised such an event while working remotely from home
  • The first time we've published our Annual Review as mainly a PDF document (although we have had a few copies printed too)

Of course, given the situation forced upon communities across the globe by the COVID-19 pandemic, we are far from the first organisation having to hold its AGM online this year for the first time, but that doesn't prevent us from feeling a sense of achievement (and relief that the event went well), and we are very pleased to have received some very positive comments both during and following the event.  Here are some of the things said:

 

"Thank you all at Northumberland CVA for the wonderful work you do and the very useful support you provide to us."

Andrea Perrett, The November Club

 

"A big thank you to Northumberland CVA for all your continued hard work - it's much appreciated!"

Ellie Phillips, Longhoughton Community & Sports Centre Trust Ltd

 

"Well done to the team; the AGM went very well as a Zoom event."

Steve Wilkinson, Newbiggin Arts Centre

 

 

Downloads

 

AGM Recording

 

 

 

Safe Places

 

 

More locations are needed throughout Northumberland to provide a Safe Place for vulnerable people who may need a little extra help when they are out and about.

Safe Places is a national project which approves local High Street shops, cafes and community venues bus stations and similar areas to provide support where needed. An approved Safe Place will have completed training in how to help anyone feeling anxious, scared, or lost, and will show a sticker in the window with the Safe Places logo.

SpLinter group, based in Amble, has been working on signing up venues to provide a network in Northumberland, and already has several venues on board.

SpLinter is a user-led community group of young adults with learning differences. They run provide a range of social events and community projects and are actively seeking more venues. They have used their personal experience to create a unique training offer that is designed to improve understanding and promote personal safety in the community.

During the current Covid-19 lockdown it’s even more important that vulnerable people have somewhere to go to feel safe, and SpLinter are continuing their training remotely during this time. Local venues that are already on board include the Blyth Community Enterprise CentreResource Centre, Costa Coffee in Alnwick, and Newbiggin Maritime Centre.

Suitable places will be close to the town centre and/or transport hubs such as bus stations, with a quiet area where someone could sit for a while. They will also need to be prepared to complete the online training.

 

“Safe Places gave us peace of mind for both of us to know that help was there if needed or in the event of an emergency” Mark Beresford, Pegswood.

 

If this could be your premises, please get in touch with Julia Lyford: call 07775 817544 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. Visit www.wafflingon.uk and www.splintergroup.uk. Find us on Facebook: @SplinterGroupNorth.

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