This is a difficult and challenging time for children, young people and families. We have created a collection of resources to support children, young people and families to stay safe and well throughout lockdown.

This page will be updated on a regular basis, so please keep checking back for new guidance as and when it is published.

Support for families

This section for parents and carers tells you all about how to keep yourself and your children safe during COVID-19, also known about coronavirus. Here you will find information about how to explain coronavirus to children, resources to help with home-schooling and important contact numbers for if you need extra support during this time.

Strengthening Families Hubs

If you are a parent or a carer and need additional support, please click on the tab below for the contact details for your nearest Strengthening Families Hub.

Strengthening Families Hubs are able to provide support, advice and activities for children and young people aged 0-18 years. With everything from parenting support, housing, benefits, training and employment and much more to help you get the most out of family life with your children.

But sometimes everyone needs a little help; whether it’s coping with difficult behaviour, routines, managing budgets or just someone to talk to, the Strengthening Families team can help. Click on the tab below to find out the contact details for your nearest Strengthening Families Hub in the city.

Contact details for Strengthening Families Hubs

Bingley Strengthening Families Hub 
Serving Penn, Merry Hill and Penn Fields areas. 
01902 551979 

The Children's Village Strengthening Families Hub 
Serving Wednesfield, Ashmore Park and Heath Town areas.   
01902 553945 

Dove Strengthening Families Hub 
Serving Bushbury, Oxley and Pendeford areas.
01902 550887 

Graiseley Strengthening Families Hub 
Serving All Saints, Blakenhall and Spring Vale areas. 
01902 550670 

Low Hill Strengthening Families Hub 
Serving Low Hill and Scotlands areas. 
01902 553285 

Rocket Pool Strengthening Families Hub 
Serving Bilston, Bradley and Ettingshall areas. 
01902 556416 

Whitmire Reans Strengthening Families Hub
Serving Whitmore Reans, Tettenhall and Dunstall areas. 
01902 556585

EastField Strengthening Families Hub
01902 558331

How can I explain COVID-19 (also known as coronavirus) to my child?

Your child may be worried by what they see, read or hear in the news or online about coronavirus. As a parent or carer, it’s good to talk to them honestly but calmly about what is happening, and to not ignore or shield them from what is going on in the world.

Children look to adults in their life for reassurance when they are worried and will take a lead on how to view things from you. Remember, you don’t have to have all the answers, but it is better to have a gentle conversation to reassure your child that they can talk to you, so they don’t feel like they’re on their own.

Older children may have already read or seen a lot of information about coronavirus on social media or online. If they are feeling overwhelmed by what they are reading, encourage them to talk about and recognise what they are finding difficult. You could help them limit the amount of times they check the news and encourage them to get information from trusted websites. The Government website is the most up-to-date and reliable source of information, and the NHS common questions has useful information if they are worried about symptoms or family members.

It’s important to remember that as a parent, you do not need to know all the answers, but you can help to contain their fears and anxieties by being there for them.

Useful resources

The below resources are useful for understanding about how to talk to children about coronavirus: 

Other fun resources

  • A fun book has been made for children to learn more about coronavirus, available in lots of different languages. You can also download the book for free.
  • A new book by NosyCrow for children about coronavirus has been written, illustrated by Gruffalo illustrator Axel Scheffler.
  • For a children's guide to coronavirus, please visit children’s commissioner.
  • An easy-read version of this information is also available.
How can I keep my child safe and healthy during COVID-19?
Social distancing

The most important way to stop the spread is by keeping the rules about being a safe distance from other people. This is called ‘social distancing’. The rules are for everyone, no matter what age, even children.

Social distancing rules mean you should only leave the house for one of four reasons:

  • Shopping for necessities, for example food and medicine, which must be as infrequent as possible.
  • One form of exercise a day, for example a run, walk, or cycle - alone or with members of their household.
  • Any medical need, or to provide care or to help a vulnerable person.
  • Travelling to and from work, but only where this absolutely cannot be done from home.

If you leave the home, remember to stay at least 2m away from other people.

You can still go out in your garden if you have one.

You can’t meet up with friends at family at the moment, but try to use technology to keep in touch, including video calls and texts.

Remember to wash your hands more often with soap and water to help prevent the spread of the virus.

Resources for children to help them learn how to wash their hands

  • Learn from our Flu Fighters Nurse about how to wash your hands properly!
  • This fun NHS video can also show you how.
  • If your children do it properly, they could even get a certificate!
  • The Flu Fighters nurse has a special poster to help you and your children stay safe at home and how they can stay in touch with their friends.
Online

You don’t need to be an expert on the internet to help keep your child stay safe online. The advice and resources below will help you as you support your child to use the internet safely, responsibility and positively.

NSPCC

The NSPCC has lots of useful information about how to keep your child safe online and how to talk to your children about the importance of online safety.


Internet Matters

Supporting you to keep your children safe online, visit the website for more information.


Think U Know

Explore the Thinkuknow website for advice about staying safe when you're on a phone, tablet or computer.

Supporting your child if they’re feeling worried

It’s normal for children and young people to feel worried or anxious at the moment. We’ve all experienced sudden changes in our lives and routines – and we’re living with lots of uncertainty about the coming weeks. For some young people, the coronavirus pandemic may also worsen or trigger anxieties they were already struggling with.

Please click on the links below, there are lots of useful resources about how to look after you and your children’s mental health at this time.

  • Young Minds website has lots of tips, advice and where to get support for your child's mental health during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic
  • Action for Children’s website has information about spotting the signs of mental health issues in your child and where to go for help
  • NSPCC has lots of information for parents about talking to a child who may be worried or anxious about coronavirus
  • For more information and advice about looking after your mental health during lockdown, please visit Stay Safe, Be Kind

If you would like more support, please contact your nearest Strengthening Families Hub. Contact details can be found on the tab at the top of the page.

Staying Active

Even though we're all stuck inside as a result of the coronavirus pandemic, there's no reason we should let COVID-19 stop us keeping fit. For children, making sure they can burn off energy and stay active is crucial for their well-being.

If you are not self-isolating, and you don’t fall into one of the high-risk groups, you are currently allowed to go outside once a day for a run or walk. Remember to follow appropriate isolation and distancing restrictions and stay at least 2 Metres away from anyone outside your household.

You and your family can also stay active in your home, even when self-isolating; this can be simple tasks and there are options for most ages and abilities such as:

  • Cleaning your home
  • Gardening
  • Dancing together to music
  • Walking up and down stairs more often
  • Seated exercises (see links below)
  • Virtual exercise classes (see links below

Joe Wick’s daily PE class is a great way for you and the family to keep fit.

Useful exercises suitable for all

  • WV Virtual Squad have put together some great ideas to keep children and young people active on their Sport and Wellbeing pages
  • WV Active has a number of activities online for all ages and abilities
  • Sport England has several tips for staying active at home
  • The British Heart Foundation also has some great tips for staying active inside and 'starting small'
  • The NHS also has some great examples for seated exercises
What support is available for home-schooling my child?

During the coronavirus pandemic, schools are closed for most children who are, like the rest of us, learning and adjusting to life staying at home. Your child’s school and teachers may have supplied teaching materials to you and are possibly carrying out online learning. If that is the case, you should listen to your child’s school and follow the lesson plans that are being set as much as possible.

This will ensure that your child continues to have a structured day and keeps up with others in their class.

Although your child’s school should have issued you with a full range of materials and internet sites based on their curriculum, which your child will need to follow, you may wish to supplement this with some additional and alternative materials. The Government has issued a list of online resources for home education for primary and secondary aged children. A number of areas of the national curriculum are covered, including English, maths, science and PE. There are also extensive recommendations covering mental wellbeing and children with SEND. 

However, during this time we realise that some parents may want more resources to help keep their child busy, active and learning, so we have compiled a list of handy, free online activities and materials to use at home.

Resources for children and young people

Wolverhampton Libraries

Wolverhampton's library service has extended the range of titles available online through BorrowBox. A further 350 bestselling children’s and adults eBooks and eAudiobooks have been added and can be accessed for free.

Customers can choose from hundreds of favourite eBooks and eAudiobooks through the BorrowBox library via any Apple iOS and Google Android phone, tablet or computer.

Titles can be borrowed for free for a period of three weeks, at which point they can be renewed or will automatically be deleted from people’s devices, meaning customers won’t be fined for forgetting to return books on time.

It's free to join Wolverhampton's libraries. To find out more, and to sign up, please visit wolverhampton.gov.uk/libraries


WV Virtual Squad

The City of Wolverhampton Council have put together the WV Virtual Squad to help you easily access a variety of fun activities and educational resources whilst staying safe at home. This site features things you may already know about, such as BBC Bitesize, but also things that are happening in Wolverhampton.

This website will be updated regularly with more information and guidance so please check back.


Wolves

As a response to Coronavirus (COVID-19), Wolves Foundation have developed a website for participants, parents and beneficiaries to provide support during this time. There are lots of fun activities for different age groups, from pre-school to secondary school.


Twinkl

Twinkl have opened up their website for free so all teachers and parents can take advantage of their teacher-created resources including entire schemes of work, assessments and online educational games.

Sign up for Twinkl for free, and use the code UKTWINKLHELPS

If you need help using Twinkl, or have any questions, they have put together a handy guide to get you started.


BBC Teach

Thousands of free curriculum-mapped videos arranged by age group and subject.


Tynker

Free resources and lessons to teach your child to code, from ages 5+.


BrainPop

BrainPop are offering their animated movies on topics in maths, science and English completely free to parents.


BBC Bitesize

Free teaching and revision material for primary, secondary and post-16 students, including advice on studying at home during the pandemic.


Rosetta Stone

Rosetta Stone are offering three months free to learn a language


YouTube resources

There are hundreds of fantastic resources on YouTube to take advantage of, including Mr Math, TED-Ed and ASAP Science.


Gov.uk

Information, guidance and support for parents and carers of children who are learning at home.

Advice for parents of children with SEND

Staying at home can be more disruptive to the lives and routines of children with special educational needs and disabilities.

No one expects parents to act as teachers or childcare providers, or to provide the activities and feedback that a school or nursery would. Parents and carers should do their best to help and support their children with their learning while they are at home.

If your child usually goes to school but is currently at home, their school should be working to provide them with work and giving them feedback in a format that meets their needs. Contact the school if you are not already in touch.

For more information about COVID-19 (coronavirus) for families with disabled children, please visit the Contact website.

Useful resources

Wolverhampton Information, Advice and Support Service

The IASS offers impartial and confidential information, advice and support to families where a child or young person has special educational needs and/or a disability 0-25.

Government guidance

The government has produced guidance to help children with SEND continue their education during coronavirus.

Information on ways you can help your child learn at home.

Other useful resources

Support and advice

  • The Disabled Children’s Partnership has an informative Help and Support Page for parents and carers of children with SEND during coronavirus.
  • Mencap has lots of important information and easy read guidance available about coronavirus.
What if there is tension at home with my family during lockdown?

You may be juggling home-schooling your kids while working from home, spending more time in the company of your partner than ever before, or feeling cooped up in a house with family members who are desperate for their own space.

The lockdown due to coronavirus has brought a host of new pressures and challenges to our everyday family life.

But there are things we can all do to help us get along with our families better, maintain strong relationships and to try to avoid clashes and frustrations during this unprecedented time in our lives.

If you feel yourself getting irritated with your family and children, don't be too hard on yourself. This is a challenging time for lots of people and there are things you can do to help. Try counting to 10 and taking some deep breaths before reacting. You can also try:

  • talking about routines, chores, work, learning and how you can all share the spaces in your home
  • being kind to yourself and each other, thanking each other for the small things like keeping a room tidy, saying "good morning" or playing quietly
  • planning, if possible, for children and adults to spend time together one on one
  • talking about your frustrations with friends and family. This can also help with feelings of isolation and loneliness
  • planning distractions outside of work and learning time to give different things to focus on. There might be some family projects you can do together, like looking at old photographs or growing seeds from vegetables and fruits you've eaten
  • taking time to think about things you would like to do once lockdown ends.

Useful links

The below links contain useful information about how to maintain effective and happy relationships with your household during lockdown:

If you would like more support, please contact your nearest Strengthening Families Hub. Contact details can be found on the tab at the top of the page.

Can I still get in touch with my child's school?

Yes. If you have concerns about your child's wellbeing during the Coronavirus crisis, you can contact their school who can provide help and advice about what they can do.

School Contact Details

What can I do if I'm worried that me or my child are not safe at home?

What to do if you're worried about a child

Home isn’t always a safe place. Schools closing could put some children at greater risk of abuse and neglect. If you're worried about a child, even if you're unsure, you can speak to the NSPCC about your concerns. Whether you want to report child abuse and neglect or aren't sure what to do, they are here to listen, offer advice and support and can take the next steps if a child's in danger.

Their telephone lines are open Monday to Friday 8am – 10pm and 9am – 6pm at the weekend. You can contact us online 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.

  • Call 0808 800 5000
  • Email help@nspcc.org.uk

If you are concerned about a child or young person

Wolverhampton Safeguarding

If a child is in immediate danger of serious harm or has been left alone dial 999 and let the operator know that it is a possible child protection issue.

If the child is not in immediate danger of serious harm but you know or suspect they are being abused or neglected call us:

Monday to Thursday 8:30am to 5pm, Friday 8:30am to 4:30pm on 01902 555392

Outside of the above hours for emergencies on 01902 552999

If the child or young person is at immediate risk of serious harm dial 999

What to do if you are worried about domestic violence

We know that if you are experiencing domestic abuse you may find social distancing particularly 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 self-isolating with somebody who is harming you, you are not alone, please contact the Haven Wolverhampton for advice and support:

Women

The Haven

  • 24-hour helpline: 08000 194 400
  • Email: info@havenrefuge.org.uk
  • Online chat (9am-pm, Mon-Fri)

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

Men

St George’s Hub

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

Domestic Violence Advice for LGBT

Advice can be accessed from Stonewall

Further support can be accessed from Galop, the national LGBT domestic violence helpline:

  • Phone: 0800 999 5428
  • Email: help@galop.org.uk

If you would like more support, please contact your nearest Strengthening Families Hub. Contact details can be found on the tab at the top of the page.

Who can I talk to if I'm worried about COVID-19 or something else?

Due to the Coronavirus pandemic life is changing for all of us for a while. When lots of things change at once it’s easy for us to feel overwhelmed.

Below is a list of useful resources and phone numbers for you if you need someone to talk to during this time.

If you would like more support, please contact your nearest Strengthening Families Hub. Contact details can be found on the tab at the top of the page.

General health

Seeing your GP

Do not attend your GP surgery, pharmacy or hospital if you think you or your child might have coronavirus.

At this stage, we should all be aiming to distance ourselves from other people as much as possible. But many people still require medications or need to get medical support for something other than COVID-19. It's still important to get medical help if you need it but try to avoid getting face-to-face help if you can. You can still get medical help, advice and prescriptions online or over the phone.

If you have a GP appointment booked for either you or your child, keep an eye out for communications from your surgery. Many surgeries have closed for face-to-face appointments and are switching to digital or telephone appointments. This is to minimise the risk to vulnerable patients and clinicians if people carrying the virus go to the practice. Practices will largely prioritise those with urgent or serious health concerns, meaning that people with routine or minor concerns may have to wait longer for appointments.

You will only be asked to visit the surgery for an appointment if absolutely necessary, but if you are, make sure to follow any instructions given to you by staff at the practice. You should continue to take precautionary measures against coronavirus whilst in the practice, as you would in any public setting.

Routine immunisations

During this time, it is very important to still take your children for their routine childhood immunisations at their GP surgery when they are invited to during the coronavirus emergency. Pregnant women should also take up the offer to have the pertussis (whooping cough) vaccine.

As long as patients attending for vaccination (including parents and carers) are well, are not displaying symptoms of COVID-19 or other infections and are not self-isolating because they are contacts of suspected COVID-19 cases, immunisation should proceed and is encouraged.

Whilst infections such as measles and meningitis are not as common as they used to be, this is only because of high levels of vaccination. It is very important that we continue to prevent outbreaks of infectious diseases by making sure children get vaccinated.

To prevent resurgence, infants still need protecting through vaccination. All routine childhood immunisations are offered to babies, infants and pre-school children including first and second MMR dose. All doses of targeted hepatitis B vaccines for at risk infants will be offered. It’s also important that pregnant women and take up the pertussis vaccine, and that their babies start receiving protection against this, and other infections, from 8 weeks of age.

GP practices are safe to attend for these appointments and continue to implement the most up to date guidance on maintaining social distance in the waiting room. Decontamination of premises and equipment is being strictly followed. Practices may be adjusting appointment times to avoid waiting times with others and in some areas, they may also be working with neighbouring practices to deliver COVID-19 and non COVID-19 activity on separate sites.

COVID-19 Emergency Dental Care

If you or your child is having a dental emergency, please call your own dentist for their emergency advice.

If you are unable to contact your own dentist or if you do not have a dentist, please call 111 for advice.

No one should be suffering from a toothache at this time; there is a service out there if you need it.

Please note that routine dental treatment is not being carried out at the moment due to COVID-19.

Health Visiting Service for children under 5

Did you know that your local Health Visiting Service is still running and here to help?

If you have any queries around your child under 5, please do not hesitate to call your Health Visiting Team on your usual number.

School Nursing Service for children over 5

You can also access the School Nursing service for any issues for children over 5. To contact this team, please phone the Gem Centre on: 01902 446 270.

Please note, Health Visiting and School nurse offer a non-urgent service. Visit Wolverhampton’s 0 – 19 service for more information.

Coronavirus

If you suspect your child may have coronavirus, please use the NHS 111 online service or phone NHS 111.

If your child is ill or injured

For any urgent medical issues, please see the attached helpful information for parents for advice on which service to access.

When your child is ill or injured it is very difficult to decide if/when to call your child’s GP, NHS 111 or go to the Accident and Emergency Department (A&E). During the current situation and while the government is asking everyone to stay at home, it can be confusing to know what to do. Please view this guidance about what to do.

In case of an emergency, always call 999.

Parent champions

Someone to talk to: parent champions offer support to other parents. Volunteer support from a Parent Champion is available by telephone or email:

Mental Health Support

If you or someone you care for needs support with their mental health, there is support available to you when you need it from the following sources:

Black Country Healthcare our new 24-7 mental health support line

A new mental health support line is available for Black Country residents of all ages.

  • Call 0345 646 0827
    • press 1 if you live in Wolverhampton or Sandwell
    • press 2 if you live in Dudley or Walsall

Positive Participation Ltd and Headstart

Positive Participation and Headstart have teamed up to provide free telephone wellbeing / mental health & befriending support services for individuals & families.

  • Telephone: 07967 743 803
  • Line open: Between 10am and 3pm, Monday to Friday
  • Email: positivework1@outlook.com

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

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.


CALM

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.


Wolverhampton Healthy Minds

Wolverhampton Healthy Minds offers psychological therapy services for people experiencing common mental health problems such as low mood, depression, anxiety and stress. If you are 16 or over, live in Wolverhampton or are registered with a Wolverhampton GP you can access this service. You can phone the service on 0800 923 0222 or 01902 441 856, 9am to 4:30pm Monday to Friday (except Bank Holidays) or visit wolverhamptonhealthyminds.nhs.uk

Financial Advice

Citizen’s Advice Wolverhampton

For general non urgent advice enquiries phone the adviceline: 0344 411 1444

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 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

Bereavement

Unfortunately, some of us may lose someone through coronavirus or for any number of reasons during lockdown. 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

Talking to your children about a bereavement

Having conversations about death with a child can be difficult. You might be worried about how much they will understand or how they will react. But speaking honestly can help them to feel supported. Marie Curie has advice and guidance about how to talk to and support a child if someone they know passes away.

Alcohol and substance information

Wolverhampton Substance Misuse Service

Recovery Near You is Wolverhampton’s Substance Misuse Service – a free, confidential service for Wolverhampton. They help anyone who is concerned about their own drinking or drug use or someone else’s. Their contact details are below:

Drink Aware

Independent alcohol advice, information and tools to help people make better choices about their drinking.

  • Website: drinkaware.co.uk
  • They also have a coronavirus hub, with useful information about looking after your physical and mental health during this time, with practical advice about alcohol and isolation.
Victim Support

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.

Family Rights Group

If you are a parent, family member or friend of a child, in England or Wales, who has social workers involved in your child’s life, or if you need extra support from Children’s Services, and would like to speak to an adviser, please call their free and confidential helpline.

  • Telephone: 0808 801 0366
  • Line open: Monday to Friday 9.30am to 3pm
  • Website: frg.org.uk
Support for young people
Are you at primary school?
What is coronavirus?

Coronavirus is an illness. We can’t see it. It can make some people ill.

Some people will get a cough. Some people get a fever. This means they might feel hot or shivery.

Most people will recover from the illness. Some people may become very ill.

People who feel very ill may need to go to hospital.

Coronavirus can pass from one person to another. It can pass through coughs or sneezes.

It can live on things that we touch.

It can pass more in big groups.

We should keep away from big groups.

There are big groups at school. This is why school is closed for now.

Everyone is staying at home. This is to keep us and our families healthy.

How can I find out more?

A fun book has been made for children to learn more about coronavirus, available in lots of different languages. You can also download the book for free.

A new book by NosyCrow for children about coronavirus has been written, illustrated by Gruffalo illustrator Axel Scheffler. 

For a children's guide to coronavirus, please visit childrens commissioner.

An easy-read version of this information is also available.

What can I do to stay safe from coronavirus?

There are 2 easy ways to help stop the virus:

1. Keep clean and wash your hands.

You should wash your hands:

  • After you cough or sneeze (it's important you cover your nose and mouth if you cough or sneeze!)
  • Before you eat and before touching food
  • After you use the toilet.
  • If you have gone outside

Learn from our Flu Fighters Nurse about how to wash your hands properly!

This fun NHS video can also show you how.

If you do it properly, you could even get a certificate!

2. Staying at home

We must all stay at home at the moment.

You can go outside in your garden if you have one.

You must not play outside with friends or family who do not live with you.

If you go out with the person who looks after you, you must stay 3 steps away from other people.

The Flu Fighters nurse has a special poster to help you stay safe at home and how you can stay in touch with your friends.

What can I do with my time if I am not at school?

There are lots of things you can do if you are not at school.

You may have school work to do whilst at home. You may also have online lessons with your teacher during this time.

WV Virtual Squad has lots of action-packed activities for you to enjoy whilst staying safe at home.

If you are missing your PE lessons, Joe Wicks has a morning workout for children every day.

You can also do lots of fun lessons every day in lots of different subjects on the BBC Bitesize website.

There are lots of other fun things you can do whilst at home on the Save the Children website, including dancing, cooking and making dens -

 

Wolverhampton Libraries

Wolverhampton's library service has lots of free online children's eBooks available through BorrowBox.

eBooks can be borrowed for free for 3 weeks. You can borrow it again if you haven't finished it.

It's free to join Wolverhampton's libraries. To find out more, and to sign up, please visit wolverhampton.gov.uk/libraries

What can I do if I still feel worried about coronavirus?

Sometimes things that happen in the world can make us sad, worried or confused.

If you are worried or something has upset you, talk to an adult you trust about it. It's important to share what is troubling you.

It's important to remember that being sad, worried or angry about awful things that happen in the world around you is okay and perfectly normal.

Doing things that make you happy can help you to feel better.

Here are some things you can do if you are having worried thoughts:

  • Read a book you love that will help to settle your thoughts
  • Arts and crafts activities
  • Cooking with the help of an adult
  • Online PE classes, such as Joe Wicks
  • If you have a garden, ask if you can grow some plants from seeds
  • If you have bad dreams, talk about it or even try drawing it.

There are lots of other things you can do at this time to help you feel better:

Helpful numbers and websites

Childline
Childline is a free, private and confidential service where you can talk about anything.

  • If you are a child and you need help, call Childline on 0800 11 11. The helpline is currently open from 9am - midnight every day. · You can also chat online
  • If you are worried about coronavirus, please visit Childline

Local support helpline if you are worried about your mental health

If you are worried and need to talk to someone, the Black Country Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust has launched a helpline for people of all ages (including children) during the current crisis.

Please don't suffer in silence. If you are feeling very worried or stressed, please pick up the phone and speak to one of their staff members who will be able to support you.

  • Telephone: 0345 6460827
  • The helpline is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week

Children's Commissioner: Help at Hand
If you’re in care, leaving care, living away from home or working with social services, they can give you confidential advice and information about your situation and answer any questions you have. No issue is too big or too small.

Mental health Help at Hand Support, advice and info for young people in care


Shout
If you’re experiencing a personal crisis, are unable to cope and need support, text Shout to 85258.

If your life is in imminent danger, please call 999.


Samaritans
Whatever you're going through, anyone, any age can call the Samaritans free any time, from any phone, on 116 123.


Think U Know
Explore the Thinkuknow website for advice about staying safe when you're on a phone, tablet or computer


Barnardo’s
|Barnardo’s has lots of information available if you are feeling worried, scared or sad during this time.

Are you at secondary school?
What is coronavirus?

COVID-19 is a new type of virus that’s been affecting some people across the world. It’s sometimes called coronavirus, and it can affect people's lungs and airways, but it seems like it has less effect on children and young people.

The symptoms are usually:

  • a high fever
  • a cough you haven’t had before

Most people who get COVID-19 or coronavirus will recover fully without ever needing to see their doctor or GP. Experts in the UK and across the world are working on treatments and ways to keep everyone safe.

For more information, Childline has lots of information and advice for young people about coronavirus. The page includes information about: what coronavirus is; where children and young people can find help if they are worried; coping if they are staying at home; and what to do if they are feeling unwell.

You can find this information on Childline's website.

An easy-read version of this information is also available.

What can I do to help protect myself and my family?

Experts all over the world are working on ways to stop the spread of coronavirus. But there are things we can all do to help:

  • Wash your hands regularly with soap and water for at least 20 seconds
  • Cover your mouth and nose when you cough or sneeze, and wash your hands as soon as you can afterwards
  • Follow advice from the government to stay at home. Only leave your home/garden for food, health reasons or school (but only if you need to e.g. because your parents are key workers)
  • Try to stay at least 2 metres away from people you see outside or in public places
  • Don't meet up with friends or family members that don't live with you. It’s important to avoid meeting up in large groups or going to crowded places. Meeting like that can make it easier for the virus to be passed on.
  • Talk to an adult you trust if you have questions.
How can I get on well with my family if I am not at school?

It's perfectly normal to be feeling anxious or frustrated at the moment, whether you're missing your friends, worried about your schoolwork, annoyed that things you'd been looking forward to have been postponed/cancelled or you're bored of being home all the time. You will probably be spending more time with your family because of home working, school closures, and other public health measures and you might find this is leading to more arguments.

Here are some tips on what you can do to help:

  • Talk to your family about how you are feeling; they can't help if they don't know how you feel or why.
  • Keep your days varied - at school you wouldn't be concentrating on one piece of work all day, so don't feel you should be at home.
  • Connect with your friends regularly - friends are an important part of your support network. Staying in touch with close friends safely via closed social media groups can help you maintain a sense of normality.
  • Stay active - exercising in your garden, if you have one, can help. You can also go for a run, cycle or walk with members of your household once a day.
  • Try and stick to some kind of routine. Sleeping, eating and working at regular times will benefit your physical and mental health, as well as helping to avoid arguments over simple things like when each person is able to use the computer. If possible, work together to organise your days – perhaps via a family timetable
  • Remember to be realistic about what you can achieve and don’t put added pressure on yourselves.

What can I do if I am worried about staying at home with others?

If you have concerns about your safety whilst staying at home during the Coronavirus crisis, you can still contact your school who can provide help and advice.

School contact details

You can also contact Childline. This is a free, confidential service where you can talk about anything you want. Call for free: 0800 1111 or Chat online

What can I do with my time if I am not at school?

There are lots of things you can do whilst you're not at school. It's likely you will have some school work, and it's important to do that if you're able to. But you may also find you have a lot more free time that you normally would.

Wolverhampton Libraries

Wolverhampton's library service has extended the range of titles available online through BorrowBox. A further 350 bestselling children’s and adults eBooks and eAudiobooks have been added and can be accessed for free.

Customers can choose from hundreds of favourite eBooks and eAudiobooks through the BorrowBox library via any Apple iOS and Google Android phone, tablet or computer.

Titles can be borrowed for free for a period of three weeks, at which point they can be renewed or will automatically be deleted from people’s devices, meaning customers won’t be fined for forgetting to return books on time.

It's free to join Wolverhampton's libraries. To find out more, and to sign up, please visit wolverhampton.gov.uk/libraries

WV Virtual Squad

The City of Wolverhampton Council have put together the WV Virtual Squad to help you easily access a variety of fun activities and educational resources whilst staying safe at home. This site features things you may already know about, such as BBC Bitesize, but also things that are happening in Wolverhampton.

This page will be updated regularly with more information and guidance so please check back.

What can I do if I am still anxious about coronavirus or something else?

It's perfectly normal to be feeling anxious about coronavirus, but it's also normal to be worried about other things. Although life has changed a lot for all of us recently, it doesn't mean our other worries have gone away.

It’s important to look to people we trust to support us. This might be your family members or carers, your trusted friends, or your teachers. Reach out to them to help you make sense of things - be open if you have fears and seek answers. Your questions may be specific and feel trivial, but that’s fine. If face-to-face contact is not always an option, find other ways to connect with people, including using technology.

There is lots of information available at present, but some of it comes from more trusted sources than others. Finding your way through this with someone you trust can help you to feel more on top of things. Watching the news and spending time on social media may help to an extent (and particularly if social media helps you to connect with those who are important to you). But focusing on the continuous flow of information about coronavirus may be unhelpful, and may have the negative effect of making people more anxious. Stepping away from it at times makes sense for us all. Try doing something you enjoy to take your mind off it. You might find baking, reading, exercising or doing some crafts helps with this.

There are also a variety of resources available for young people to access if you're struggling with anything; it doesn't have to be related to coronavirus!

Helpful websites and phone numbers

Childline
Free, confidential service where you can talk about anything you want.

  • Call for free: 0800 1111 or
  • Chat online

Black Country NHS Mental Health Support Helpline
If you are worried and need to talk to someone, the Black Country Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust has launched a helpline for adults, teenagers and children of all ages during the current crisis.

Please don't suffer in silence. If you are experiencing increased distress or anxiety during these uncertain times, pick up the phone and speak to one of their specialist mental health professionals who will be able to support you.

  • Telephone: 0345 6460827
  • The helpline is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week

KOOTH
Free, anonymous online counselling and support for young people 11-18


Young Minds

The Young Minds website also has some good advice and tips regarding looking after your mental health whilst at home:


Anna Freud National Centre for Children and Families

The Anna Freud National Centre for Children and Families is a children’s mental health charity with over 60 years’ experience of caring for young people and their families.


Barnardo’s
Barnardo’s has lots of information available for young people if you are feeling worried, scared or sad during this time.


Samaritans
Free confidential support line for people who are feeling desperate


Children's Commissioner
Mental health Help at Hand Support, advice and info for young people in care


Shout
Crisis text messenger service (any age)


Spurgeons Support for young carers


Stonewall
Information and support for LGBT communities and their allies.

  • Contact Stonewall's Information Service free on 0800 0502020
  • Lines are open 9:30 - 4:30 Monday to Friday.
  • Website: stonewall.org.uk/

The Children’s Society
The Children’s Society has a mental and emotional health resource vault, full of advice on issues that may be worrying young people during this time.


LGBT Foundation
Advice, support and information for LGBT people.

  • Advice, support and information helpline number is 0345 3 30 30 30
  • The helpline is open weekdays 9am - 9pm and weekends from 10am - 6pm.
  • Email: helpline@lgbt.foundation
  • Website: lgbt.foundation/how-we-can-help-you

Wolverhampton 360: Young People's Substance Misuse Service
Wolverhampton 360 is here for anyone under 18 who wants honest advice and guidance, support and/or treatment for anything to do with drugs or alcohol use. You can talk to them in confidence without judgement.

  • Call 0300 123 33 60 free for confidential advice and guidance
  • Lines are open 24/7.
  • If no one is available to speak with you, leave a message and they will get back to you.
  • Email: bsmhft.recoverynearyou@nhs.net
  • Website: w360.org.uk

Frank
Honest information and advice about drugs and alcohol


Embrace
Wolverhampton race is Wolverhampton's free and confidential sexual health service. They are currently offering telephone consultations during coronavirus.

To call for an appointment, ring one of the following numbers 01902 575 151 or 01902 575 141 between the times of 9:00am - 11:00am Monday - Friday.

They will make an assessment over the phone, and can determine the best course of action for you.


Think U Know
Explore the Thinkuknow website for advice about staying safe when you're on a phone, tablet or computer.


B-eat
Support with eating disorders


Coping with Loss

When someone you love dies, you will feel lots of emotions and this is called grief. Coping with those emotions might be harder at the moment because of the coronavirus and rules meaning we have to stay at home and can't see all of our family.

The Director of Public Health for Wolverhampton has reminded us all that the risk to the general public remains low and that organisations in the city are doing all we can to stop the virus spreading to help the people of Wolverhampton stay safe and healthy.

However, if you have lost a family member or friend during this time, it's important you know you aren't alone. The organisations below are just some of those set up to support you at this difficult time.

Child Bereavement UK

Hope Again

CBBC Newsround

What other sources of information about coronavirus would you recommend?
  • Childline has created a new webpage with information for children and young people about coronavirus.
  • National Geographic have also got some helpful information for young people on their website.
  • CBBC Newsround has lots of information about what is being done to tackle coronavirus
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