On 3 February, The Government announced measures to help millions of households from rising energy costs. For more information, please visit our Council tax rebate page.

How to help yourself and others during COVID-19.

Stay Safe logo

Stay Safe

This section tells you all about how to keep yourself and others safe during COVID-19, also known as coronavirus. Here you will find information about social distancing, self-isolation and shielding, what to do if you think you might have coronavirus and keeping yourself safe at home.

How to protect myself and others
Self-Isolation

Self-isolation is important to prevent the spread of Covid-19. Self-isolation means that you:  

  • stay at home, do not go to work, school or public areas or use public transport; 
  • do not leave the home to buy food or essentials or to exercise 
  • do not have visitors to the home

More information

 

Protecting yourself and the person you care for

This section is for anyone who cares, unpaid, for a friend or family member who, due to a lifelong condition, illness, disability, serious injury, a mental health condition or has complex needs, cannot cope without their support.

Prepare

Create an emergency plan for the person you care for. This should include: 

  • the name, address and any other contact details of the person you care for
  • who you and the person you look after would like to be contacted in an emergency
  • details of any medication the person you look after is taking
  • details of any medical appointments they need to keep

Make sure your emergency plan is in a format that can readily be shared with other people.
 
You may be able to arrange help and support from family and friends, but it can be reassuring to have the involvement of the local authority or healthcare provider in case informal arrangements fall through. 

Local Support

It may be also be helpful to contact the Carer Support Team who can help with contingency planning:

Further Information

The government has published detailed advice about caring for someone, including what to do if you or the person you care for has symptoms.

More information

I need some support

If you require any support such as, food, transport, feeling lonely or isolated, please call 01902 290241.

If you are experiencing financial hardship and you need help, please view Financial support and guidance, email: wrs.covid19@wolverhampton.gov.uk or call 07966 292321.

If you are unwell, please call 111 or in the event of an emergency 999.

COVID-19 Mutual Aid

Mutual aid groups are collections of citizens who are offering help in response to the coronavirus outbreak. 

Groups providing support at a time of crisis are critical to keeping the city going, but please keep in mind that they are not commissioned by the Council and are managed individually by the groups themselves. 

If you (or a loved one) are a vulnerable person, please think carefully about the appropriateness of your ask from these groups. If you do have any concerns, please contact the Safeguarding Team.

Find out what you can do if you’re struggling because of coronavirus (COVID-19)

The government has produced a tool where you can find out what help you can get if you’re affected by coronavirus. 

You can find information about:

  • feeling unsafe
  • going in to work
  • paying bills or being unemployed
  • getting food
  • having somewhere to live
  • mental health and wellbeing

You will not get direct support from the government or organisations through this service: gov.uk/find-coronavirus-support

Helpful support numbers and websites

Age UK Wolverhampton
01902 572060


Age UK national advice line
0800 678 1602


Citizen’s Advice Wolverhampton

For general advice enquiries phone the Adviceline number on freephone 0800 144 8848.

For debt text: 07850 209529 with your name and they will call you back or Email debtadvice@wolverhamptoncitizensadvice.com

For urgent crisis text 07525 844112 and they will call you back.


Wolverhampton Carer Support Team
Call 01902 553409 or e-mail carer.support@wolverhampton.gov.uk


Wolverhampton COVID-19 Benefits Helpline
A new helpline ‘Benefits and Covid-19’ has been launched for people living in Wolverhampton who are worried about their Social Security benefit rights and entitlements following the Covid-19 outbreak. Email wrs.covid19@wolverhampton.gov.uk or call 07966 292321


Rethink
Rethink Emotional Support Helpline is a freephone service for those who are in need of support, reassurance and understanding.

The service can be contacted on 0808 802 2208 at the following times:

  • Monday- Friday 6.00pm – 3.00am
  • Saturday- Sunday 2.00pm – 3.00am

PHE have launched a new campaign to support people to manage their mental wellbeing during this difficult time, using Every Mind Matters self-care resources.


The Samaritans
If you need to talk to someone contact The Samaritans online, by telephone 116 123 or email jo@samaritans.org. Emails will be replied to within 24 hours.


West Midlands Victim Support Team
If you’ve been affected by crime, call your local victim care team in the West Midlands on 0300 303 1977. Lines are open 8am-8pm Monday to Friday, and 9am-5pm on Saturday.


Bereavement
Unfortunately, some of us may lose someone through coronavirus. There are many organisations who can help.

Cruse Bereavement Care has online resources to support you and your family during this distressing time. This includes how this pandemic may affect bereavement and grief. They offer a free helpline: 0808 808 1677

West Midlands Police also offer some information. Please see 'Bereavement information for families' in the Downloads section.

Food Banks in Wolverhampton

Some food banks which usually only accept referrals are now allowing people to contact them direct because of COVID 19. To help them observe social distancing they would like people to phone or email rather than visit. Food banks can provide food directly in an emergency, although they cannot cater to personal taste.

See below for a list of food banks in Wolverhampton:

The Well

Referrals by phone through a recognised organisation (e.g. Social Services, Housing, Citizens Advice, Refugee & Migrant Centre and many others who provide advice & support across the city)

Referrals by phone Tuesday to Friday between 9.30 am and 12.30 pm. Parcels delivered between 1.00 pm and 4.00 pm.


Good Shepherd Ministry

  • Address: 65 Waterloo Road, Wolverhampton, WV1 4QU
  • Telephone: 01902 399955

Family food parcels provided on Tuesdays, 10.30 am – 11.30 am. Homeless food collection each day Monday to Friday, 12.00 pm – 2.00 pm. Office open 9:00 – 4:00pm.

Please note that dining services have been suspended


Adventist Food Bank

Referrals from agencies (email referrals are not accepted) and some self-referrals. Phone between 9.00 am and 3.00pm on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday. Deliveries are made on the same day as referral between 1.00 pm and 8.00 pm where possible but while there is high demand, some deliveries may take up to 24 hours from the referral.


Bilston People’s Centre

Food parcels delivered on Mondays and Thursdays. Service is for people who live in Bilston mainly but may be able to help with referrals from some surrounding areas. Referrals preferred from local agencies and recognised sources (e.g. local Councillor/MP, Wolverhampton Homes, WVSC) but people living in Bilston or members of the congregation of Excel Church can self-refer.


Elias Mattu Foundation

  • Telephone: 07904310530 / 07427173171

For the Elias Mattu Foundation Foodbank, their distributing days are Monday, Wednesday, Thursday, and Saturday, 11.30am - 7.30pm.

Referrals can be made via social-prescribing, COVID-19 Mutual Support groups or via self-referral.


St Alban’s Ashmore Park

  • Address: Ashmore Park Pantry, St Alban's Church, Griffiths Drive, Ashmore Park, Wolverhampton, WV11 2LJ
  • Telephone: 01902 732317
  • Email: revtomfish@gmail.com
  • Facebook: @StAlbansAP

Local food bank focused on Ashmore Park and WV11 postcode area. Anyone short of food can come in person to collect what they need, or you can collect on behalf of someone else in need. Local deliveries by arrangement.

Open Wednesday 12-2pm, Friday 4-6pm, Sunday 12-2pm.

Support with shopping

If you need someone to do your shopping for you if you’re vulnerable or self-isolating and have enough money to pay for it and internet access, an online delivery or volunteer card might be helpful.

All the main supermarkets are now working to prioritise elderly and vulnerable people for home delivery slots. When it’s delivered your shopping will be left at a safe distance.

If you have friends, family members or even community volunteers who can do your shopping on your behalf you could use a Volunteer Card, which is a type of e-voucher. They are quite easy to set up online and mean you can purchase an e-voucher for a volunteer to do some shopping for you.

Using an e-voucher means you don’t have to give the volunteer or neighbour your bank details or hand over cash as they are sent to your shopper by email. They are also safe to use as they mean you don’t need to have any physical contact with the person helping you.

For details of the largest supermarkets offering priority measures for vulnerable customers, please view the document called ‘Supermarket Offer in Wolverhampton’ in the 'Download' section..

If you, or someone you know, is vulnerable or self-isolating and doesn’t have friends or family nearby to help with shopping, NHS Volunteer Responders are available to help. Call 0808 196 3646 (8am to 8pm) to register and arrange volunteer help.

Keeping yourself safe at home

Times like these can bring out the best and worst in people. While some will be looking out for vulnerable relatives and friends, we also know a small minority will be looking to profit from the worry and concerns caused by coronavirus.

  • Choose a neighbour you trust to keep in touch with by phone, they can help make sure volunteers and helpers are safe.
  • Don't feel pressured to let someone into your home.
  • If someone offers to do your shopping for you don't give them your bank card or PIN number or large amounts of cash.
  • Take the time to think about any offer, even if it's genuine.
  • Don't be embarrassed to say 'No' to people or ask them to leave.
  • Be mindful of clicking on links in emails or messages or paying for items online from companies you have not researched.
  • If you suspect door-step and online scammers call 101, or 999 if you feel threatened or in danger.
What to do if you are worried about domestic violence

We know that if you are experiencing domestic abuse you may find following government advice difficult, particularly if it means spending more time with your abuser. However, you do not need to stay home if you are at risk of abuse or violence.

If you are worried about domestic abuse, you are not alone, please contact the Haven Wolverhampton for advice and support:

The Haven 

If you are a male victim of domestic abuse you can contact St Georges Hub on 01902 421904.

In an emergency always dial 999.

You can also find more advice and guidance on staying safe whilst self-isolating in this Haven guide, this Safe Lives guide or on The Haven Wolverhampton Twitter page.

For more information about coronavirus and economic abuse, please view Economic abuse and the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak.

For more information view the West Midlands response to domestic abuse and the #NoExcuseForAbuse campaign.

What to do if you're worried about hate crime

Hate crimes and incidents come in many different forms. It can be because of hatred on the grounds of your:

  • race
  • religion
  • sexual orientation
  • transgender identity
  • disability

It doesn’t always include physical violence. Someone using offensive language towards you, damaging your property or harassing you because of who you are, or who they think you are, is also a crime. The same goes for someone posting abusive or offensive messages about you online.

If you do not feel safe in your home or community due to hate crime, please seek support.

The following organisations are here to help:

  • Contact WMP via Live Chat or report via 111 alternatively, you can report this online to True Vision.
  • Victim Support have a dedicated hate crime team who can be contacted on 01902 795830 (8:30am-4:30pm Mon-Fri) or email Hatecrime.Westmidlands@victimsupport.org.uk
  • In an emergency always dial 999.
  • For more information about hate crime and the help and support available in Wolverhampton please visit Stop Hate

 

Fire safety

With more people staying at home it is more important than ever that people are taking appropriate steps to prevent fires.

Detailed fire safety advice has been provided by West Midlands Fire Service to advise individuals and businesses how they can keep their homes and premises safe. The advice can be found here.

Be Kind logo

Be Kind

This section tells you all about how to look after yourself and others during COVID-19, also known as coronavirus. Here you will find information about volunteering, taking care of your mental health and wellbeing and looking after your physical health.

Looking after your mental health and wellbeing

The information in this section is to help support your mental health and wellbeing, and provides links to resources and contact numbers for those who can help you when you need support.

Are you experiencing mental distress and need urgent support?

Having a mental health crisis generally means when someone’s health worsens to the point they need urgent help from professional services.

A crisis can include:

  • thinking about suicide or acting on suicidal thoughts
  • thinking about harming yourself
  • having an episode of psychosis (where you might experience or believe things that others do not), or
  • doing something that could put yourself or other people at risk

If you or someone you care for is experiencing a mental health crisis there is support available to you when you need it from the following:

Black Country Healthcare 24-7 mental health support line
This mental health support line is available for Black Country residents of all ages. Call 0800 008 6516 at any time.

The Samaritans
If you are having a difficult time or if you are worried about someone else, The Samaritans are there to listen. Contact The Samaritans online, by telephone 116 123 or email jo@samaritans.org. Emails will be replied to within 24 hours.

Rethink
Rethink Emotional Support Helpline is a freephone service for those who are in need of support, reassurance and understanding. The service can be contacted on 0808 802 2208 at the following times:

  • Monday- Friday 6.00pm – 3.00am
  • Saturday- Sunday 2.00pm – 3.00am

For more information visit the Rethink website.

Are you concerned about your mental wellbeing?

Are you feeling low and struggling to lift your mood? 

Perhaps you are worried about things and struggling to find solutions to problems, and not able to think about anything else other than these problems.

There is support available to you:


The Wolverhampton Healthy Minds Service offers brief psychological therapy for people experiencing common mental health problems such as low mood, anxiety and stress.

If you are 16 or over and registered with a GP in Wolverhampton, the service can help you.  You can be referred to this service by your GP or call 0800 923 0222 to refer yourself.


The Sanctuary Cafe is a safe place for anyone aged 18 or above who requires support outside of regular mental health services opening hours. The aim of the service is to help people prior to them reaching crisis point.

The Sanctuary Cafe is open 7 days a week, Monday - Friday 6pm- 11pm, Saturday and Sunday 12pm - 11pm
 
No referral is necessary for this service simply call 0800 008 6516, which will connect you with the 24/7 Black Country Mental health line who will then check which is the most suitable service for you and if appropriate ask the Sanctuary Team to make contact with you during the above hours to arrange you going in.


Wolverhampton LGBTQ+ provide free counselling to those that identify within our LGBTQ+ community.  

If you need or know someone that would benefit from service then please contact WLGBT+ by emailing wolveslgbtalliance1@outlook.com.  

WLGBT+ aim to make contact within 7 days, then you will be able to have a chat with one of their counsellors. 


Cruse Bereavement Care has online resources to support you and your family during the distressing time of a bereavement. Call the service freephone service on 0808 808 1677


CALM is the Campaign Against Living Miserably, for people in the UK who are feeling down or feel as if they ‘have hit a wall’ for any reason.


Papyrus - If you are a young person, or if you know a young person who is not coping with life, For confidential suicide prevention advice contact Papyrus on 0800 068 4141, (Monday to Friday, 10am to 10pm, and 2pm to 10pm on weekends and bank holidays.  Alternatively email pat@papyrus-uk.org or visit papyrus-uk.org


Anxiety UK - Providing support if you have been diagnosed with an anxiety condition. Phone: 03444 775 774 (Monday to Friday, 9.30am to 10pm; Saturday to Sunday, 10am to 8pm) or visit their website.


Bipolar UK - A charity helping people living with manic depression or bipolar disorder.


Men's Health Forum - 24/7 stress support for men by text, chat and email.


Mental Health Foundation - Provides information and support for anyone with mental health problems or learning disabilities.


Rethink Mental Illness - Support and advice for people living with mental illness. Phone: 0300 5000 927 (Monday to Friday, 9.30am to 4pm)


SANE - Emotional support, information and guidance for people affected by mental illness, their families and carers. SANEline: 0300 304 7000 (daily, 4.30pm to 10.30pm).


YoungMinds - Information on child and adolescent mental health. Services for parents and professionals. Phone: Parents' helpline 0808 802 5544 (Monday to Friday, 9.30am to 4pm).


Dementia Connect - Alzheimer's Society's new personalised support service provided access to advice online 

If you have any concerns about caring for someone with dementia through the coronavirus outbreak, you can contact the Admiral Nurses Helpline on 0800 888 6678 or email helpline@dementiauk.org


Online resources

If you are experiencing stress, feelings of anxiety or low mood, you can use the NHS page on mental health and wellbeing for self-assessment, audio guides and practical tools.

Every Mind Matters also provides tips and advice to start taking better care of your mental health including:

View links below for more information:

Are you feeling lonely?

Common reasons for experiencing loneliness include:

  • Being in an unfamiliar situation; in a new workplace, in a new school or neighbourhood
  • Feeling disconnected from others: no one shares your interests, values or personality
  • When someone is no longer working and is adjusting to being less busy
  • When someone important in your life who is no longer there.

Loneliness can affect our physical health and mental health.  It can be hard to admit we are lonely and need help, but we should encourage anyone feeling this way to contact someone who can understand and offer support

If you are concerned about someone who is lonely, reach out to them. - sending a text or giving them a call to see how they are doing, suggest catching up over a tea or coffee, or invite them to join you in getting some fresh air and going for a walk.

Support is also available from the following:


Wolverhampton Community Support Service offers information and advice to people aged 18 or over living in Wolverhampton to improve their independence and wellbeing. The team helps people access the support they need to live independently and connects them with groups and activities in their local area.  Please contact the service on 01902 553445 or email community.support@wolverhampton.gov.uk 


Telephone Befriending Service Compton Care - A team of Telephone Befrienders provide a regular friendly phone call to individuals who require additional support to help reduce feelings of isolation and loneliness. A friendly, 30-minute chat on the phone regularly can make all the difference. The telephone befriending service is available to anyone who is affected by loneliness in Wolverhampton. Please contact on 01902 774570


Wolverhampton Social Prescribing Service - If you are aged 13 or over and are experiencing loneliness you can ask your GP to refer you to the Social Prescribing Service who will link people with support in their local communities.  Please contact on 01902 328987 or email SPInfo@wolverhamptonvsc.org.uk
 

Taking care of your mental health and wellbeing

The tips and advice here are things you can do to look after your mental health and wellbeing.

Connect with others
Connect with others logo

Connecting with others, including friends and family is important for your health and wellbeing.

Maintaining social relationships with people you trust is important for your wellbeing. Connect with people around you either in person, via telephone, video calls or social media – whether it’s people you see often or connecting with old friends.

Building connections with others will support your own wellbeing and also let others know that you are thinking of them.


Five Ways to Wellbeing artwork courtesy of the Mental Health Foundation of New Zealand.

Be active
Be active logo

Regular physical activity is linked with feeling good and functioning well so try to build some physical activity into your daily routine.

It is recommended that you do at least 20-30 minutes of moderate physical activity a day but remember any activity is better than none!

Physical activity does not need to be intense, light activity can make a difference too. This can be simple tasks such as cleaning your home or gardening.

If you can and able to, once a day get outside. Spending time in green spaces can improve your health and wellbeing.

Useful links


Five Ways to Wellbeing artwork courtesy of the Mental Health Foundation of New Zealand.

Take notice of what is going on
Take notice of whats going on logo

Taking notice and being aware is important as it’s linked with good health and wellbeing. Pay attention to how your family or friends might be feeling.

Savour the moment and take time to reflect on your experiences as this will make you appreciate things in life. Take time to relax and focus on the present. This can help with difficult emotions, worries about the future, and can improve wellbeing. Relaxation techniques can help some people remain calm and deal with feelings of anxiety. For useful resources see Every Mind Matters and NHS’ mindfulness page (link below)

Useful links


Five Ways to Wellbeing artwork courtesy of the Mental Health Foundation of New Zealand.

Keep learning
Keep learning logo

Take up opportunities to learn something new. This can enhance self-esteem and makes us feel good within ourselves. Try something new or rediscover an old interest that you didn’t have time to do before i.e. reading a book or learning how to use a laptop or trying a new recipe.

It is good to keep your brain occupied by reading, writing or doing quizzes.

You could sign up online for tutorials and online courses that might be of interest- many of which are free.

If you are a parent be a role model for your children and show them that it's important that we all keep learning.

Useful links


Five Ways to Wellbeing artwork courtesy of the Mental Health Foundation of New Zealand.

Give some time to support others
Give some time to support others logo

Remind us to be kinder to those around us. We tend to feel better when we give to others It could be as simple as giving someone a smile or thanking them.

Do something nice and spend time on others such as keeping an eye on elderly neighbours or relatives and think about how you could help them if needed – it could make a big difference to them and can make you feel better too.

You can also give by volunteering your time.

Wolverhampton Voluntary Sector Council are collecting information about potential volunteers and matching their skills to those that need it. They will help to make sure that both those who are volunteering and those who receive support are kept safe. If you would like to volunteer please visit wtonvolunteers.org


Five Ways to Wellbeing artwork courtesy of the Mental Health Foundation of New Zealand.

Do you have worries about money?

You may be worried about work and money.  If there is uncertainty about your job this can have a big impact on your mental health and wellbeing

For guidance on what your rights are at work, what benefits you are entitled and what further support is available you can seek advice from Citizens Advice Bureau

You can also contact the Citizens Advice Bureau by text or email:

For DEBT

For urgent CRISIS

A ‘Benefits and Covid-19’ helpline has been launched by the Council for people living in Wolverhampton who are worried about their Social Security benefit rights and entitlements following the Covid-19 outbreak.

The helpline which is run by the Council’s Welfare Rights Service can be accessed at:

Are you worried about housing?

If you are having problems paying your rent or mortgage or have any concerns about your housing, please click on the relevant section below for advice:

Help if you're homeless

Homelessness - Shelter England

Advice if you are experiencing difficulty paying your mortgage

Advice if you are having difficulty paying your rent

Advice if you are experiencing problems paying your bills

What else you can do to look after your mental health and wellbeing?

Ensure you have enough food, toiletries and other essential supplies

Think about how you can get any supplies you need before you start to run out. If you are social distancing, you can go to the shops and buy any essential items. Remember to maintain a distance of two metres from others at all times. Make a list before you go and keep your shopping trips to a minimum.

Try to pick healthy food, especially as you might not get as much exercise as normal. If you are self-isolating the best option is to ask a trusted friend, neighbour or relative to do your shopping for you. They can drop this off outside your door so that you can avoid face-to-face contact.

Support your family

If you are a parent, then make sure you keep an eye on your children’s emotional mental health and wellbeing. School closures have come as an abrupt halt to their daily routine and they are likely to be missing their friends. Whilst dealing with the changes to family life at this time it will be helpful to create a new routine for children and to reassure them that the changes have been necessary to keep everyone safe.

Useful guidance can be found on gov.uk.

Watch your alcohol intake

This is a stressful time for lots of us and in times of stress we can find ourselves drinking more often or more heavily.

On top of that, many of our routines will have changed, which might make it hard to keep on top of how much we’re drinking. Here are some ways to help you look after your mental health while keeping a happy, healthy relationship with alcohol.

Coronavirus and those affected by Dementia

People with dementia are likely to have other health conditions, making them particularly vulnerable to develop severe symptoms and complications if affected by Coronavirus. People with dementia are prone to developing delirium (a state of confusion) if they develop an infection. They may also not be able to communicate if they are experiencing any symptoms due to communication difficulties and may not be able to follow instructions on hand washing or social distancing.

There are several resources specifically for supporting people caring for those with dementia during the outbreak:

Dementia Connect: Alzheimer's Society's new personalised support service provides access to advice online

If you have any concerns about caring for someone with dementia through the coronavirus outbreak, you can contact the Admiral Nurses Helpline on 0800 888 6678 or email helpline@dementiauk.org.

Useful Links

dementiauk.org

Support for young people and families

Kooth

Kooth is a free and safe online digital counselling service for young people aged 11 to 18. 
Kooth delivers a confidential and non-stigmatised way for young people aged 11 to 19 to receive counselling, advice and support online. Counselling sessions are available from 12pm until 10pm Monday to Friday, and 6pm until 10pm Saturday and Sunday.   

Base 25

Base 25 is a young person information and advice centre offering a daily drop in service and a range of other targeted and specialised projects/services. These include:

  • Counselling up to the age of 35.
  • Anger management Programme for under 16’s.
  • Crisis Counselling 
  • EMPOWER for young people at risk or who are being sexually exploited.
  • Support working with young people around ending gang and youth violence.
  • SAFE for those at risk of perpetrating behaviour synonymous to domestic violence.
  • A Reducing Harmful Sexualised Behaviour programme.

For more information visit their website, phone 01902 572040 or email info@base25.org

ChatHealth

ChatHealth is a new NHS text messaging service for young people across Wolverhampton.
11-19 year olds can text a school nurse on 07507 332 631 to get confidential advice and support for a range of health and wellbeing issues, including:

  • Anxiety, emotions and anger
  • Bullying
  • Family issues and friendships
  • Sexual health and contraception
  • Smoking, alcohol and drugs
  • Sleep
  • Staying healthy

ChatHealth works by messages being sent to a dedicated number - 07507 332 631 - which are delivered to a secure website. Messages are read by a school nurse who then starts a text conversation with the young person. All texts receive an automatic message explaining where to get help if their question or concern is urgent, and when they can expect a response.
ChatHealth is available 9.30am to 4.30pm, Monday to Friday (except bank holidays). The service aims to respond to texts within 24 hours. If your text is received outside of these hours, the service will aim to respond on the next working day.

Other sources of support:

  • For anyone who requires urgent support for their mental health and wellbeing, The Black Country Healthcare Foundation Trust 24/7 Mental health telephone support line 0800 0086516.  This service is available for people of all ages, including children and young people
  • Young Minds: 02073 368 445 or enquiries@youngminds.org.uk
  • Samaritans: 08457 909 090 or jo@samaritans.org.uk
  • MIND Information Line: 08457 660 163 (self-help books are also available)
  • Youth Access: 02087 729 900
  • BEAT: 08088010677 or beateatingdisorders.org.uk
Mental health support for those with sight loss and hearing impairments

Beacon Vision Befriending service

This is a service for people in Wolverhampton who may be feeling lonely, including those with visual impairment.

Befriending can be via the telephone or home visiting generally once a week from a committed volunteer. The volunteers support people to access services, connect them with their local community or simply give them some company.   If anyone accessing this service is experiencing low mood or concerned about their wellbeing, they can be referred on to targeted services to help address these needs. To access the programme email referrals@beaconvision.org or call Beacon Vision reception on 01902 880111.

Zebra Access

For those who are deaf or hard of hearing support is available from the Zebra Access Wellbeing Service.   The service offers advice on wellbeing, mindfulness and runs regular workshops and events.  To find out more about the service please email ella@zebra-access.com or text 07861 677 816.

Eating well

There are no foods or supplements that can prevent or treat COVID-19. Nevertheless, eating a well-balanced diet, with plenty of fruits and vegetables, whole grains, proteins and healthy fats is the best way to get all the essential nutrients you need for good health and normal immune function.

If you aren't able to eat as much fresh fruit and vegetables as normal due to self-isolation, don't panic; canned, dried or frozen fruit and vegetables, as well as fruit juice or smoothies (but do not have more than 1 portion a day as these drinks are sugary and can damage teeth) also count towards your 5-a-day.

As you may be less active during self-isolation, it is also important to pay close attention to food portions to keep our energy balance adjusted to meet your needs. During long periods of stress, you may find you are eating more than you need. Additionally, staying at home for longer periods can lead to snacking out of boredom. Maintaining a daily routine can help manage some of this stress. One way to do this is by sticking to regular mealtimes and planning meals in advance.

This can help better control hunger levels, meet nutrient requirements and allow you to get the most out of the food available to you, reducing food waste. If you do find yourself needing a snack, opt for healthier options like fruit, nuts or yoghurt as these foods are nutritious and more filling.

Useful Links

Staying hydrated

Good hydration is important for all age groups and is something for everyone to consider.

The NHS Eatwell Guide says we should drink 6 to 8 glasses of fluid a day. Water, lower fat milk and sugar-free drinks, including tea and coffee, all count. Water is a healthy and cheap choice for quenching your thirst at any time. It has no calories and contains no sugars that can damage teeth.

Tips for staying Hydrated:

  • Try to keep a bottle or glass of water on your desk, or by your side, throughout the day.
  • If you do not like the taste of plain water, try adding a slice of lemon or lime. Or heat the water and infuse a tea bag. You could also add some no-added-sugar squash or fruit juice for flavour.
  • If you are caring for someone, you may need to prompt, encourage or assist to drink. Offering a preferred cup or glass may help.

Useful Links

Smoking

The best thing a smoker can do is to quit, to protect themselves and others, and reduce the impact on NHS services.

Coronavirus (COVID-19) is a respiratory infection, it affects the lungs and airways. Smoking damages your lungs and weakens your immune system. This makes it more likely that you will have complications if you get sick and that it will take you longer to recover.

Smokers are also much more likely to get other health problems at a time when the NHS is under strain from COVID-19.

Why not decide that ‘today is the day’, there’s lots of helpful resources and support available to aid your quit attempt. If you’re not ready to quit just yet, you can also find out more information on protecting others from second hand smoke.

Why not join the conversation, and share your story of quitting, or hear from other people how they are getting on with their quit attempts by following #QuitforCovid

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