Barwell & Hollycroft Surgery Telephone Befriending Service

Article written by: Barwell & Hollycroft Surgery


Many GP practices are visited by patients who are struggling with loneliness. The pressures on GP surgeries mean that GP’s do not have the time to spend chatting to people to help alleviate their feelings of loneliness. The Jo Cox Foundation discovered that loneliness does more harm to people’s physical and mental health than obesity and smoking 15 cigarettes a day – anxiety stress insomnia, depression and dementia are also symptoms associated with loneliness.

To begin with it was really difficult to work out how best to develop the idea.  People’s time is precious and face to face Befriending is very valuable but many people do not have the capacity to take this on.  Telephone Befriending then began to seem a possible way of offering a service where people in full time work could give up some time a week talking to a Befriendee.

At first it was difficult to get started but the big change came with the introduction of Local Area Coordinators, financed by Social Services and Social Prescribers funded by the NHS. These people are linked to GP surgeries and do brilliant jobs of dealing with non-clinical issues that patients have. Referrals  from health professionals meant that a holistic approach was being satisfied so not only was loneliness addressed but things contributing to their loneliness (health, family issues, mobility) were also being looked at.

With this in place then referrals began to be made to us.

But wait! Referrals are fine but we didn’t have any volunteers so I was advised to look at VAL (Voluntary Action Leicestershire) and the Rural Community Council (RCC) who both offered very valuable advice. The need for DBS checks was discussed, training needs and funding opportunities identified.

Befrienders are there as Alerters not as people who solve the problems of the people they are assigned. If we have concerns then these are passed through our Coordinator who then contacts the person who referred the Befriendee to us.  We then step back allowing the professionals to take over.

Getting new recruits is always a problem but since advertising through VAL we have had 10 of our 41 Befrienders come to us.  We are delighted to say that one of those can speak a number of Indian languages and we have our first referral so this will hopefully mean a more meaningful interaction can take place.

After three years we are seeing that the benefits to this service don’t only serve the person referred to us but also the Befriender gets a great deal out of some very interesting conversations. Some long term friendships have developed and thrived.

We have also been nominated twice for the Hinckley & Bosworth Making a Difference Awards and were, along with 3 other organisations, finalists in the National Association of Link workers Awards for Community Groups.


Ebay for change

Details of the ebay for change programme can be found here: https://pages.ebay.co.uk/ebay-for-change/

They are now getting ready to take on their fourth wave of sellers who will be selling on the platform in time for Christmas 2022 respectively.

Training will begin in September 2022.

If your social enterprise would like to part of the programme then you can complete an application here: https://pages.ebay.co.uk/ebay-for-change/


Working with Young People – Media Literacy and Digital Youth Work

Many young people have grown up in a digital age with access to computers, technology, and the internet; making it essential that youth workers are able to effectively respond to young people’s changing needs in the new digital landscape.

The free course contains 5 micro-modules:

  • How the online environment operates, includes commercial motivations behind online platforms, digital advertising, and how and why digital communities are used by young people
  • How online content is generated and can be critically analysed, looking specifically at awareness of dis-information and how to fact-check to determine veracity
  • The risks of sharing personal data online, centring on how personal data can be used by others and the importance of protecting online privacy
  • Understanding how actions online have consequences offline, highlighting what behaviour is not acceptable online and the impact extended screen-time can have on wellbeing
  • How youth work can enable young people to engage in safe and positive online engagement, brings together learning from modules 1-4 and applying this knowledge to support young people with improving their safety and wellbeing in digital spaces

Volunteer and staff within the local VCSE youth sector may wish to access this free training.

Further details and how to book can be found here.

 


Orlando Fraser – New chairperson of the Charity Commission

Details of his appointment can be found here.

Orlando delivered his inaugural speech on 4 May 2022 at the Trustee Exchange Conference in London. Within that speech he states “ I want the work of the Commission I lead to be informed by 3 key values – fairness, balance and independence. “ You can find out more about his ideas regarding these values here.

He recognises the contribution of trustees. Explaining that

“Trusteeship requires personal sacrifices. It means giving time and energy you might otherwise dedicate to your careers, or your family, in serving your charity and the people it helps. We are all in your debt.”

He asks trustees to consider two areas where you could do something yet more for your charity.

  • The first concerns your legal duty of prudence as trustees, or as you may know it, managing your charity’s resources responsibly. “ Please think on this carefully and consistently, as your charity prepares to navigate the choppy waters ahead of the cost of living crisis, and other as yet unnamed crises. “Utilising the charity commission managing charity’s finances guidance might be a good starting. https://www.gov.uk/guidance/managing-charity-finances

If your charity is based in Leicestershire, supporting local communities and  would like help with managing your charity get in touch with VAL’s helpline 0116 257 5050 or helpline@valonline.org.uk. Your request for support will then be allocated to a member of the sector support team.

  • The second concerns the ongoing recruitment of trustees for the sector.  “As you will know from the research, you are statistically the most likely people to be able to recruit more trustees for your own charity. So please don’t lose sight of this special trustee superpower: advocate for your organisation, for the endorphins of volunteering, and the good work that you do. And, when recruiting new trustees, please work to make any recruitment drive as inclusive and diverse as possible, thus ensuring the continued excellence of the sector.”

VAL can provide support with recruiting operational volunteers and trustees. You can find out more about registering opportunities and obtaining one to one support here: https://valonline.org.uk/recruit-volunteers/


Charities Act 2022

NCVO, in their governance round up article, describes the purpose of the new Act to reduce bureaucracy and make it easier for charities to operate. It does this by allowing for:

  • More straightforward amendment of governing documents where the Charity Commission needs to approve the change – the same test will now apply to all charities, rather than different tests for different forms
  • Reduced rules around disposal of property, ex gratia payments, and charity mergers
  • Flexibility in the way that charities can use permanently endowed funds.

The government’s implementation plan provides details of what comes into force in Autumn 2022, Spring 2023, and Autumn 2023.
https://www.gov.uk/guidance/charities-act-2022-implementation-plan

Some of the first provisions that come in force include:

  • Section 30: Remuneration of charity trustees etc. providing goods or services to charity
  • Section 32: Trustee of charitable trust: status as trust corporation

If you are a Leicestershire county based organisation and would like to discuss any topics relating to governance of your organisation, you can contact VAL using the helpline email helpline@valonline.org.uk . Or phone number 0116 257 5050.
Your request for support will then be allocated to a member of the sector support team.


Domestic and Sexual Violence Services locally

Although services will not be delivered as UAVA Ltd,  member organisations of this consortium will continue to provide commissioned services.

The new services will be delivered by organisations including Freeva, Living Without Abuse, Women’s Aid Leicestershire Limited and Panahghar.

The new contracts will build on current provision which has been in place since December 2015.

The existing helpline number, 0808 80 200 28, which is a free phone, and hidden from bills, will remain and will be for both members of the public and professionals.  This will be the main route for people to access or signpost to all domestic and sexual violence services locally.

The current professional line 0116 255 0004 will be phased out over the next few months.

Further details of the new services are as follows:

Service Name & Interventions

Provider

Eligibility

Access

Helpline & Engagement Service

Helpline: 8am – 8pm, 7 days a week
10am – 4pm on Bank Holidays

  • Advice, advocacy, information on rights, processes and option
  • Emotional support face to face and webchat
  • Assessment of need, risk and Barriers/ Safety planning
  • Co-ordination of support
  • Access to accommodation if required
  • Support through the Specialist Domestic Violence Court
  • Represent the victim’s voice at Daily MARAC
  • Onward referral to other specialist services as appropriate
  • Initial support specific to children and young people
  • Initial assessment/support for perpetrators
Freeva

www.freeva.org.uk

Services are available to:

  • Adult and Children victims of domestic and sexual violence
  • Family/Friends
  • Professionals
  • Perpetrators of domestic violence/abuse

Children & Young people using violence /abuse within dating relationships or towards parents/carers.

Services are available to all who reside (temporarily or permanently) in Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland

Access via the helpline
0808 80 200 28,Online referral form via websiteWeb-chat
Text phone: 07715 994 962
Email: info@freeva.org.uk
Sexual Violence & Abuse Service

  • Individual and group support victims Support through the criminal justice system
  • Support to help victims to cope and recover
  • Training
Freeva

www.freeva.org.uk

  • Available to all who reside (temporarily or permanently) in Leicester,
  • Leicestershire and Rutland and have been subject to sexual violence or abuse and other third parties who are concerned about them.
  • The service is available to victims of all ages
Access via the helpline
0808 80 200 28Online referral form via website
Leicester children, young people, and families domestic abuse service

  • Individual and group support for children, young people, and parents.
  • Specialist workers for young people.
  • Practical and emotional support.
  • Training.
Living Without Abuse

www.lwa.org.uk

  • Resident temporarily or permanently in Leicester and with children under 18 in the household and
  • Have experienced domestic abuse which is having a current detrimental impact on the children and young people in those families.
  • Accessible to those in employment and in full time study and with no recourse to public funds.
Access via the helpline
0808 80 200 28Online referral form via websiteIn person via community hubs
Leicester Domestic Abuse Locality Service (adults)

  • Individual and single sex group support
  • Advice clinics
  • Support at court
  • Training
Living Without Abuse

www.lwa.org.uk

Age 16 or over and;

  • resident temporarily or permanently in Leicester and;
  • have experienced domestic abuse and be suffering a current detrimental impact of that.

For men and women.
Accessible to those in employment and in full time study and with no recourse to public funds.

Access via the helpline 0808 80 200 28,

Online referral form via website

In person via community hubs

Leicester Domestic abuse perpetrator service

  • Respect accredited programme
  • Foundations programme
  • Dad’s programme
  • Partner and ex-partner support worker
  • Training
Freeva – The Jenkins Centre

www.jenkinscentre.org

Aged 18 years and over

  • Resident temporarily or permanently in Leicester
  • No ongoing court proceedings connected to domestic abuse
  • Accessible to those in employment and in full time study and with no recourse to public funds.
Access via the helpline 0808 80 200 28,

Online referral form via website

Leicester Women’s Refuge

  • 15 units of refuge accommodation in Leicester over two sites and staff on site.
  • Regular individual support and advocacy
  • Emotional and practical support, including with move-on into independent housing.
  • Access 24 hours a day.
  • Free accessible WiFi
Women’s Aid Leicestershire Limited www.wa-leicester.org.uk
  • Women aged 16 or over with or without children
  • Resident or fleeing to Leicester
  • At current risk of domestic abuse
  • Accessible to those in employment and in full time study and with no recourse to public funds.
Access via the helpline 0808 80 200 28,

Online referral form via website

Minoritised Ethnic Communities Women’s Refuge

  • 15 units of refuge accommodation in Leicester over two sites and staff on site, some suitable for larger families.
  • Regular individual support and advocacy
  • Emotional and practical support, including with move-on into independent housing.
  • Access 24 hours a day.
  • Free accessible WiFi
Panahghar Safehouse Ltd www.safehouse.org.uk
  • Women from a BME community aged 16 or over with or without children
  • Resident or fleeing to Leicester
  • At current risk of domestic abuse
  • Accessible to those in employment and in full time study and with no recourse to public funds.
Access via the helpline 0808 80 200 28,

Online referral form via website


New local self-harm support service

Harmless’s clinical team are running a virtual event on Thursday 12 May 2022 10am to 11am to explain :

  • What to expect from the Harmless Self Harm Support Service
  • How to signpost and refer into their service
  • Case studies and testimonials from individuals supported
  • How they can work with you to ensure early intervention and care for those affected by self-harm
  • The funded (free to delegates) self-harm training offer which is open to professionals working across Leicester/shire

As well as answering any questions you might have about the service.

You can book to attend the event here.

If you are unable to attend the event, but wish to signpost someone to this new local service, the online secure form can be found here.

For more information contact the organisation direct.


Mental Health Awareness Week – Mind developing services locally

This year’s theme, is ‘Loneliness’.

The Mental Health Foundation, who organise the week, describe why they chose the theme. “ Loneliness is affecting more and more of us in the UK and has had a huge impact on our physical and mental health during the pandemic. Our connection to other people and our community is fundamental to protecting our mental health and we need to find better ways of tackling the epidemic of loneliness. We can all play a part in this. Reducing loneliness is a major step towards a mentally healthy society.”

For more details about the week and how you can get involved click here.

More locally, Mind, a national charity with a network of around 125 local Minds across England and Wales, has made a commitment to work tirelessly until everyone experiencing a mental health problem gets the support and respect they deserve. To help honour this commitment they have ambitions to develop support and services across Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland (LLR).

They aim to develop identity, to influence, and to have impact in the local area and they will do this by putting people at the heart of what they do.

Their services and support packages are evidence-based and co-designed with people who have lived experience of mental health problems.

If you would like further information about how they are establishing a Local Mind for LLR or would like to support the organisation in any way, contact Rachel Nott, Mind Nottinghamshire’s Engagement and Development Lead  at rachel.nott@nottinghamshiremind.org.uk


The Queen’s Platinum Jubilee Volunteering Award

This year, The Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service (QAVS) is running a special additional award to commemorate the Platinum Jubilee. They want to celebrate the fantastic work completed by national charities and their volunteers to empower young people and provide them with skills and opportunities.

This opportunity is only open to registered charities that are organised on a national basis (either UK-wide or with a national reach in England, Northern Ireland, Scotland or Wales)

You can find out more of the criteria and how to apply by clicking here. 

https://www.gov.uk/guidance/the-queens-platinum-jubilee-volunteering-award

Previously we reported about the annual Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service, which is open to a wider category.

Nominations for the 2023 awards are now open and they are accepting nominations until 15 September 2022. Further details can be found here.


easyfundraising makes fundraising for your organisation effortless

‘Simple’, ‘easy to use’, and ‘an effective way to raise money’ are phrases used to describe online funding platform easyfundraising by other voluntary organisations, charities, and CICs.


easyfundraising makes fundraising for your organisation effortless. By partnering with over 6,000 online brands, easyfundraising turns online shopping into free funding your organisation can put to good use. With most people shopping online now, it’s an easy way for your volunteers, supporters, and the wider community to support your fundraising efforts for free. Every time they shop online, they’ll generate a donation for you at no extra cost to them.


How is Space Youth Services fundraising for staff development and new pilot initiatives?

Along with thousands of voluntary organisations, charities and CICs, they are benefitting from monetary donations when their volunteers, staff and supporters use fundraising platform easyfundraising to shop online.

Your organisation can do the same by setting up an easyfundraising account so your volunteers and can raise money for you when they shop at over 6,000 online retailers including eBay, Amazon, M&S, John Lewis, Sainsbury’s and Tesco.

Space Youth Services say,

“I would definitely recommend it to other organisations as a simple, straightforward way of raising additional funds that require little input and maintenance.”

Find out more about easyfundraising here:https://www.easyfundraising.org.uk/val/