Community Connector online newsletter – helping families find support
We are Jasmine, Jo, Jez and Patrick and we are Community Connectors at Surrey County Council. We are passionate about helping families find the right support.
We want to let people know how to find support and information by using the Family Information Service and Local Offer websites. We also build relationships in the community so that we can hear about new services and add these to the Family Information Service Directory.
Our newsletter is our place to share new or existing services we come across. We'll also provide helpful information, based on what families and practitioners are telling us in the community.
As we enter 2021 and another lockdown, we're sharing information to help families in these uncertain and challenging times. This includes tips for home educating, as well as where to find financial, emotional and relationship support.
We hope this information will be helpful to you.
For information, advice and updates about childcare settings, schools and colleges use the links below:
- Schools and childcare information during coronavirus (Surrey County Council website)
- Coronavirus (COVID-19): education and childcare (UK government website)
Supporting home learning and children's wellbeing during lockdown
If you have questions about how to support your children's education and wellbeing during lockdown, you're not alone. You can find information and advice how to do so below:
- Get help with remote education (UK government website)
- Homeschooling tips (Parents website)
- Guidance for parents and carers on supporting children and young people's mental health and wellbeing during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic
Extra teaching material for parents and carers
It is important to follow whatever work schools or colleges set your children. But families may also find the following resources useful:
- The BBC provide daily content to support learning at home via their Bitesize and Teach websites. The content is arranged by age group, curriculum and subjects
- From Monday 11 January the BBC will also provide televised educational content during the daytime to support home learners. From 9.00 am each day, CBBC will deliver a three-hour block of educational programming linked to the national curriculum for primary-aged children, as well as other educational programmes in the afternoons. For secondary-aged pupils, BBC Two will provide at least two hours of educational programming that supports the GCSE curriculum
- The government's Hungry Little Minds site provides simple and fun activities for children, from newborn to five years of age
Foodbanks and financial advice
If you are struggling financially during this difficult period, you may like to contact one of the services in the shortlists below:
- North East Surrey (Spelthorne, Epsom and Ewell and Elmbridge)
- North West Surrey (Surrey Heath, Woking and Runnymede)
- South West Surrey (Guildford, Waverley)
- South East Surrey (Mole Valley, Reigate and Banstead and Tandridge)
You may also find the Financial help page on the Surrey County Council website helpful.
Community help and support
Helplines and online support for parents
The New Year period can be a difficult period for parents for several reasons. There are a number of services who can offer advice or emotional support, including both national and local helplines and online support services for parents.
If you are finding that your relationships have been put under strain, perhaps more so with the effects of the coronavirus restrictions and the economic downturn, the following shortlist provides details of support and counselling services that may be of help.
Domestic abuse support
If you are experiencing domestic abuse or are concerned that someone may be, please contact one of the services on the domestic abuse information for families page.
Remember if you need immediate help and support phone the 24-hour National Domestic abuse helpline on freephone 0808 2000 247. In an emergency, please call 999. If you cannot speak without endangering yourself, or cannot make a noise to communicate, the call handler will activate a Silent Solution system and may ask you to press 55 to confirm consent to transfer your call directly to the police.
Please note if you need to urgently leave an abusive or violent situation in order to safeguard yourself or your children, the Covid restrictions do not apply and that you are free to move to a place of safety without penalty.
Support for children and young people
Health and emotional wellbeing advice for children and young people
There are a number of services young people can use to receive confidential expert advice to help support their mental health and emotional wellbeing.
We've listed some local and national services that are available and may offer online or telephone support to children and young people.
Bereavement and young people
Sadly, many young people will have experienced the death of a loved one over the past months. Our Helping children cope with bereavement web page has the details of services that may be of use.
Further information and support
There are many more ways to find local and national support over this period. These can be found on our Family Information Service Directory.