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Coronavirus (COVID-19) resources and helpful information for families

Parents/carers and young people are facing numerous challenges as a result of Coronavirus (Covid-19). These include juggling work commitments with educating children from home, concerns about finance and the uncertainty this period creates.

We have created this web page so parents and carers are aware of what telephone and online support is available at the moment. The page contains the following sections:


Coronavirus (COVID-19) general information and advice

  • All the latest information and guidance from Public Health England on coronavirus or COVID-19 can be found on the www.nhs.uk/coronavirus website.
  • Surrey County Council's information and advice on Coronavirus – includes details of community support and information regarding council services. There is also a community helpline number: 0300 200 1008.
  • The Department for Education have sent up a Coronavirus helpline for anyone with education related questions. It can be reached on 08000 468687 between 8am to PM Monday to Friday or by email at DFE.coronavirushelpline@education.gov.uk
  • The NHS have issued special guidance for parents (PDF) which gives details of what professional advice to seek in different circumstances.

Returning To Schools and Early Years Settings

With more schools set to reopen in the coming weeks, schools and early years settings will be working with parents and carers to support children through the next stages of this evolving situation.

Surrey County Council supports nearly 500 schools, and every school is different. Headteachers will only open their individual school when it is safe to do so, and this means that school provision is likely to vary considerably across the county.

For information on when and how your school is opening see that school's website for details.

Surrey County Council has recently sent out three letters to parents and carers, which are available to download below:

We will be updating this page with more information, guidance and resources whenever they become available.

The latest Government guidance for parents and carers about the reopening of schools and educational settings is available on the gov.uk website.

Domestic abuse

Domestic abuse is the physical, emotional, verbal, sexual or financial abuse of one person by another with whom they have or have had an intimate or family-type relationship. If you are experiencing domestic abuse or are concerned that someone may be, please contact one of the following:

Further services who can provide support to those experiencing domestic abuse can be found on the Surrey Family Information Service Domestic abuse - information for families web page. If you need immediate help and support phone the 24 hour National Domestic abuse helpline on freephone 0808 2000 247. In an emergency call 999.

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Emotional wellbeing support for children

It is understandable that children and young people may have a number of worries at the moment. The following services may be helpful to them if they want to speak to someone about how they are feeling or need more immediate support.

Emotional wellbeing support for children of all ages

  • CAMHS Community Crisis Service provide specialist assessment for children and young people in crisis who present at any of Surrey's general hospitals or who are referred directly to the service by their local CAMHS practitioner, health or social care professional.
  • Childline- A free, private and confidential service for children and young people where you can talk about anything. The phone service 0800 1111 operates between 9am and midnight.
  • Learning Space are a mental health charity who work with children and young people for a wide range of reasons. Support offered includes a telephone helpline, support for parents awaiting a CAMHS service and online support for young people with anxiety. They can be contacted on 07588757638 (West Surrey) or 07907336592 (East Surrey).
  • Young Minds is a charity that aims to support children and young people's mental health. They have produced a blog for young people concerned about coronavirus.

Emotional wellbeing support for children aged 10 and over

  • CYP Haven are safe spaces for young people to drop into to talk about worries and mental health confidentially. Although the centres are closed, there is a virtual phone service operating the opening times and phone number of which are listed on their website.
  • Emerge Advocacy are a charity whose workers provide support for children and young people aged 10-25 who have attended Royal Surrey or St Peters Hospital because they've self-harmed, taken an overdose or if they are feeling suicidal. They can offer support by phone / video call during this period and can receive referrals from schools for young people who have not attended A&E but who are deemed likely to do so under normal circumstances.
  • Kooth is a free, anonymous, confidential, safe, online wellbeing service, offering counselling, information, and forums for children and young people age 11-18.
  • No Panic provides support for those who suffer from Panic Attacks, Phobias, Obsessive Compulsive Disorders and other related anxiety disorders. They have a Youth Helpline (0330 606 1174) for 13 to 20 year olds.
  • Matrix is a youth charity providing one-to-one support in schools for young people struggling with life by providing a safe space to talk about things that are concerning them and finding ways to help them cope and move forwards. During the Covid-19 crisis they are offering online youth support sessions through a secure portal where young people (primarily in Guildford) in school years 7-13 can speak to a trained and safely recruited youth worker. Sessions can be booked by calling 01483 574900, emailing youth.support@matrixtrust.com or booking online.
  • Papyrus provide confidential support and advice to young people struggling with thoughts of suicide, and anyone worried about a young person through its helpline- 0800 068 4141.
  • SABP Youth Counselling Service provide online and telephone Counselling for 12-24 year olds with mild to moderate issues, living, working or studying within west Surrey and north east Hampshire. Contact can be made by phone 0345 6002516 or 07827 992764 or email: rxx.youthcounsellingservice@nhs.net
  • The Mix offers information and advice about any subject to children and young people between 13-25. It provides helpline and online support.
  • YMCA East Surrey offer telephone and on-line counselling via their Heads Together Youth Counselling and Waves group support for young people with mental health needs. These are currently being offered remotely and the service are open for further referrals.

If you are concerned about your or another child's emotional wellbeing, you can contact the Young Mind's Parent Helpline on 08088 025544.

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Grief and bereavement

The loss of someone close can be difficult at any time for a child but may be especially hard during this period where children are not seeing friends or other family members as regularly as they might. The services below may be able to offer some help and advice both to children and parents.

  • Child Bereavement UK is a service that provides confidential support and guidance to children, adults and professionals affected by bereavement. It has a helpline- 08000 288840 or can be contacted by email support@childbereavementuk.org
  • Cruse are a bereavement charity, who have a free helpline- 0808 808 1677 along with a large amount of resources on its website.
  • Jigsaw South East is a service that supports children through the loss of a loved one. They are currently offering online and support via a coronavirus crisis bereavement helpline- 01342 313895.
  • Winston's Wish is a childhood bereavement charity that offers parents and practitioners advice on how to support bereaved children. They have a phone service 08088 020 021, which returns voicemail messages or an email enquiry service: ask@winstonswish.org

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Health, Development and Wellbeing advice

The services below can offer advice and support to children and parents regarding health, development and well-being.

  • Children and Family Health Surrey Chat Health is a text service on for young people aged 11-19 in Surrey, if there is anything they want to talk about. It can be contacted on 07507 329951.
  • Safespace is an interactive website designed for school age children, providing advice on physical and emotional health issues
  • The Occupational Therapy (OT) Advice Line (07974 230 554) provides advice regarding self-care (getting ready to go out, eating a meal, using the toilet), being productive (going to nursery/ school), leisure (playing with friends/doing hobbies). It is open Tuesdays and Thursdays 2pm – 4pm.
  • The Surrey-wide 0-19 Advice Line (Health Visiting, School Nursing) provides support on all aspects of child health, development and parenting. The helpline can be contacted on 01883 340 922 and its opening hours are between 8am- 5pm Monday- Friday.

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LGBTQ+ services

There are a number of services available to support both adults and young people from the LGBTQ+ community during the lockdown period, some of which are:

  • Outline provides support to people with their sexuality and gender identity, including but not limited to the lesbian, gay, bi-sexual and trans community of surrey, primarily through their helpline (01483 727667), website, live chat facility on their website and support groups.
  • Pride in Surrey are continuing to support people during this time through a number of initiatives. The details of these and support are available through their website and helpline number- 01483 664770.
  • Twister (LGBT+ Youth Groups) Youth Workers from Surrey County Council run Twister, which is a safe space where young people can meet to get support, make friends, and take part in fun, creative and awareness raising activities. It is for young people age 13 to 19 and up to 25 if the young adult has special educational needs or disabilities (SEND). Groups are continuing to run virtually.

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Parent/carer support

This period can bring many worries, concerns and additional pressures to parents and carers. The Early Help Partnerships Team have put together some free resources for parents/ carers with strategies and suggestions for parenting during the lockdown period and beyond. There are also a number of different services available that can provide support, some of which are provided below.

Parenting advice and courses

  • Family Lives is a charity whose aim is to help support parents and carers to deal with all aspects of family life. They have detailed information on their website, as well as a telephone helpline- 0808 800 2222.
  • Barnardo's Surrey Positive Parenting Service offers advice and support for parents of children who have been diagnosed with, or whose children are awaiting a diagnosis of ADHD. Self-referrals are being accepted and contact can be made by phone- 01293 610689 or email: surreypositiveparenting@barnardos.org.uk.
  • Family Link's Parent Zone has a number of free resources that may be useful for parents, as well as a link to their free online parenting course, which is hosted on the Netmums website.
  • Home-Starts in Surrey provide support to families with at least one child under the age of 5. Normally they provide a home-visiting service but during the crisis are offering phone/video support as well as practical support where possible. See their website for contact details of the Home-Start operating in your area.
  • If you are a Surrey resident you can access several free online parenting guides. The guides are called understanding your pregnancy, labour, birth and your baby/Understanding your baby/Understanding your child 0 to 19 years.

Parent and carers- emotional wellbeing support

  • Anxiety UK is a service that supports people suffering from anxiety, stress and anxiety based depression. It has a helpline 03444 775774 and text service: 07537 416905
  • Calm is a service for anyone who for whatever reason wants someone to talk to or to find information and support. Its helpline can be reached on 0800 58 58 58, a web chat service is also available through its website.
  • The Lucy Rayner Foundation provides counselling support for parents and young adults struggling with mental health challenges. They can be contacted by telephone or email: info@thelucyraynerfoundation.com
  • No Panic provides support for individuals who suffer from Panic Attacks, Phobias, Obsessive Compulsive Disorders and other related anxiety disorders. They have a helpline number - 08449 674848.

Relationship support and advice for single parents

  • Relate West Surrey is a service who offer relationship support to couples and young people aged 11-18. They are offering currently offering these services via Webcam. They can be contacted for appointments by telephone 01483 602998 or email appointments@relatewestsurrey.org.uk
  • Gingerbread is a charity that offers advice and support to single parents. They have a helpline 08088 020925 that can offer advice on a wide range of subjects.

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Special Educational Needs and Disability (SEND)

Detailed information of the support available for children with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND) and their families during this period can be found on a dedicated page on the Local Offer website.

However some of the services who may be able offer support include:

SEND team contact details

If your child has an Education, Health and Care (EHC) plan, or one has been requested. You can contact a Caseworker at your local SEND team for support or advice about this.

  • North-West SEND Team (Woking, Surrey Heath, Runnymede) Tel: 01483 518110 Email nwsen@surreycc.gov.uk
  • South-West SEND Team (Guildford, Waverley)Tel: 01483 517890 Email: swsen@surreycc.gov.uk
  • North-East SEND Team (Epsom and Ewell, Elmbridge, Spelthorne) Tel: 01737 737940 Email: nesen@surreycc.gov.uk
  • South-East SEND Team (Reigate and Banstead, Tandridge, Mole Valley) Tel: 01737 737990 Email: sesen@surreycc.gov.uk

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Support for young people

  • Surrey Young Carers is a service that assists young carers by providing emotional support and information about support, coping strategies and resources. They can be contacted by telephone on 01483 568 269 or email at syc@actionforcarers.org.uk .
  • Eikon is a charity that supports young people to overcome difficulties. They recently launched a virtual youth club @EikonVYC on Facebook (Instagram to follow soon) to share information / activities and Blogs. They can be contacted on 01932 347 434.

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