April 2020: Angus Carers Centre - Newsletter Update for Our Ongoing Activities During Covid-19
Our phone lines are open:
Monday to Thursday 9am to 12.30pm and 1.30 pm to 5pm,
Friday 9am to 12.30pm and 1.30 pm to 4.30pm.
If you, or the person you care for, are already in contact with social work services, you should direct any questions to the care manager who is supporting you/them.
If there is no social work contact you should call Angus Carers Centre on 01241 439157.
This number will take the caller to one of our admin workers. Callers should give a summary of why they are calling. The admin worker will get a message through to the appropriate member of staff who will call back as soon as they can. (Please note the return call may be from a number the caller may not recognise).
We are working with the Angus Health & Social Carer Partnership and Angus Council to make sure that carers who themselves have received a “Shielding” letter from the Scottish Government have all the help and support they need.
We want to stress that although services have been impacted; Angus Carers Centre staff are still available to support you. We are still able to take referrals for family members and friends who are looking after someone who couldn't get from day to day without their help or from a worker in another agency who can see they need extra support we can offer. Referring is very simple. Email us at email@example.com or call us on 01241 439157.
Find out what local support is available by visiting www.anguscarers.org.uk.
Do you sometimes feel you could do with someone else to talk to?
Would you like to hear a friendly voice on the phone once a week, someone who understands about caring?
Angus Carers Centre’s new telephone befriending service is run by experienced, trained volunteers, who understand the issues associated with caring. One of our volunteers will ring you at an agree time and day to talk about anything you like - whether you fancy a light-hearted chat or a chance to 'get it all off your chest' - depending on what kind of a week you've had!
In a nutshell, the service is like having a supportive friend at the end of the phone, when it's convenient for you.
This new service is open to all carers registered with us. If anyone would like information on how to make a referral to Angus Carers Centre, please get in touch as well.
If would like to find out more please call Angus Carers Centre on 01241 439157.
Angus Young Carers are continuing to support young people and families within Angus. Indeed we are continuing to provide a service albeit in an innovative approach which is allowing us to connect and provide that support through social media, 1:1 telephone support, text messages and video calling.
On the 24 March all young carers that had registered with the Easter Activities were delivered an activity pack. We understand that due to lockdown the caring role for our young carers can be become more intensified due to not being able to attend respite opportunities out with the family home. We know that to enable our Young Carers to continue in their caring role it was important that we gave a positive message and to ensure that they did not feel forgotten and that we could continue in providing respite but through reaching out with the use of social media.
The packs had different activities that the family could get involved in. The picture below shows a very happy young person with her activity pack.
Caitlyn (pictured above) is very excited to get started on her activities. Thank you so much everyone!
Closed Facebook pages have allowed staff to provide interactive activities, allow young people and families to share ideas, crafts and keep in touch. Megan and Heather have been busy ensuring that all our social media platforms are keep up to date with current and important advice and information.
Live streaming of activities have encouraged families to come together. Megan made a pom-pom bird and Heather made a bird feeder. All young carers within the 8-11yr old Easter Activity Pack had all the materials to create these at home.
In these unprecedented times COVID-19 has changed all of our day to day living. Angus Carers Voice Network (ACVN), supported by Angus Carers Centre wants to capture the changes it may have meant for you.
Some of you may remember the “Carers Diary Project” completed way back in 2017. The ACVN were planning to ask you to complete this again in spring 2020 to compare the earlier findings discover if there had been any major changes in your caring role since the first project.
Then COVID-19 and Lockdown happened. This required a rethink of our plans. ACVN have suspended their plans for a full Diary Project until later in 2020.
At the moment they are really interested to find out what difference that COVID-19 has made to your life and your caring role. This is a shorter version of the original diary. All carers, whether registered with the Carers Centre or not are invited to complete their Diary.
Please complete your diary entries by Friday 16th May 2020.
ACVN meets again on Tuesday 12th May 2020, 10.30am – 12 noon
As the Carers Centre is unlikely to be open again in time for the date of the next planned meeting we thought this would be a good time to test out having the meeting by using a video conferencing app called “Zoom”.
Many carers have told us they would really like to get involved in ACVN but are not able to do so either because they don’t have transport, don’t have the time to travel to Arbroath or are working when it is on. We won’t be able to respond to all of these barriers in one go. By having our next meeting using this new digital tool, which is now available to anyone with a computer/laptop or tablet, will be a great way to try and open out ACVN to many more carers. If this works we can then trial an evening meeting for working carers.
At the meeting on Tuesday 12th May we will look at the progress being made to develop an “Emergency Card for Carers” as part of the requirement in the Carers (Scotland) Act 2016 for all unpaid carers to have an Emergency Plan in place.
If you would like to attend this meeting your will need to download the Zoom app from https://zoom.us/support/download
Then email firstname.lastname@example.org to let us know you want to attend. You will then be sent an invitation link prior the meeting which will start at 10.30am. If you’d like a short practice session before the meeting please indicate this in your email to Jill.
The Cabinet Secretary has announced changes to social security in Scotland. The full statement can be found by following this link and a summary of the key changes, set out by the social security team, are below.
For Carer’s Allowance we have adopted the same measures that the UK government announced on the 24th of March which include:
The Scottish Government will also still pay the Carer’s Allowance Supplement in June and December, if DWP is still able to supply us with the necessary data.
Young Carer Grant
For Young Carer Grant (YCG) Social Security Scotland continues to be able to take applications through all the usual channels.
To ensure that coronavirus doesn’t stop anyone accessing the support they deserve we will also allow applications for YCG from people who have recently turned 19 but couldn’t apply while they were 18 due to coronavirus.
During this time of uncertainty the priority is to maintain the benefits we are currently delivering. Given the current uncertainty, it is not possible at the moment to say clearly what this will mean for timescales for delivering Scottish Carer’s Assistance and Carer’s Additional Child Payment. We will continue to update you of revised timelines as they become clear.
The Carers Centre in Arbroath is not open at the moment due to the lockdown. However staff are busy working away from their temporary “outreach offices” (their living room/kitchen/spare bedroom).
It’s still very much business as usual for staff although they have found new ways to work very quickly.
Here are some of the staff at a team meeting earlier this week - we are now all very proficient at using Zoom!
Current Communication - your views matter.
We have 3 very short questions for you. It will only take two minutes to complete the survey below but will really help us to gauge how best to communicate with you. Please complete the survey by Friday 16th May 2020.
Shared Care Scotland advise that over the coming weeks it is inevitable that short breaks services will not be running as normal, if at all. All over the world organisations are looking at how they can deliver things differently and there are some fantastic, creative examples of how this is happening.
They have provided an excellent catalogue of suggestions and ideas and advice and guidance around Coronavirus. These can be found on the Shared Care website – Short Breaks For Strange Times.
It is so important to keep fit and healthy. There are many exercise videos available to help with this. Why not try this one out. It’s ‘Walking at Home’ and lasts about 15 minutes.
Did you know...
Earth is the only planet in the solar system that is not named after a god.
Popeye has nephews called Peepeye, Pupeye, Pipeye and Poopeye.
Your heart beats around one hundred thousand times a day, that’s over 36 million times in a single year.
The first electronic computers (developed in the 1940s) were the size of a large room.
Olympic gold medals are actually made mostly of silver.
The sunlight we can see has taken about 8 minutes and 20 seconds to reach us from the sun
Approximately, 15 percentage of the world's population are left-handed.
Now is a great time to be getting involved in hobbies. How about learning some facts relating to hobbies. Try this quiz for fun. Follow the link for the answers.
1. The noun 'toxophilite', means a lover or devotee of which pastime?
2. What is the hobby of former shot putter and strongman Geoff Capes?
3. If you wanted to visit 'the Three Counties System', what is your hobby likely to be?
4. In the UK the requirement to have a licence for which hobby was abolished in 1984 after successful lobbying by C.Scope International?
5. What hobby practises the art of writing and lettering artistically?
6. A blunger is a machine commonly used in which pastime?
7. Thomas Joel Bopp and David H. Levy shared a love of which hobby?
8. What does the acronym NCN stand for - it was created by the charity Sustrans, who were aided with a £42.5 million National Lottery grant?
9. If you were a tegestologist, what would you collect?
For more information on hobbies see https://www.hobbycraft.co.uk/ideas/
Do you enjoy the challenge of puzzles – try these out:
- https://www.theguardian.com/crosswords - free online crossword.
Interested in audible books? Try this free book service https://stories.audible.com/discovery
Help, advice, information – there are many online information points about coronavirus. Here are some of them:
Ready Scotland – where to find additional support,
Scottish Government – Coronavirus in Scotland.
SCVO have developed a Coronavirus Community Assistance Directory that allows you to search for help and support in your local area.
If you need to access help or support or you are concerned about someone else in Angus, do not hesitate to seek support.
If you think you or someone else is in immediate danger call 999.
If you are self-isolating...
Things to think about if you are offered, or need, support during this time.
You can contact the ACCESSLINE on 03452 777 778 if you need support or you feel unsafe. In an emergency, call 999.
Whilst self-isolating to protect our health, it's also important to ensure we're keeping our homes safe! Scottish Fire and Rescue Service - Your Safety have created this great carers checklist - perfect for printing and sticking on the fridge as a daily reminder!
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Our mailing address is:
Angus Carers Centre, Ground Floor, 8 Grant Road, Arbroath, Angus, DD11 1JN.
Telephone 01241 439157.