COVID-19: Advice & Support for Families

Last updated 5th January 2021.

In these unprecedented times it can be overwhelming to be a parent or carer.

You’re not alone and there are plenty of support groups and charities offering information and advice to help us all through the coming weeks.

How to look after your family’s mental health during this time

The following details offer a range of tips and advice:

 

Educational Psychology Service (EPS) Help for parents & carers:
If you are a parent/carer of a child in Somerset or North Somerset and would like to speak to a Psychologist with any concerns arising for you, or your family during this time, then The Educational Psychology Service is here for you. They are able to offer an initial 30 minute telephone consultation (discussion) and a potential follow up call, of another 30 minutes if appropriate.

If you would like to access this service, please email epshelpline@somerset.gov.uk with the following information: your name; the name of your child’s school (or ‘EHE’ if Electively Home Educated); times and dates that you are not available for consultation.

If email is not possible, call 01823 357000.

General Health

ChatHealth, run by Somerset’s Public Health Nursing team, offers parents, carers and families of under-fives the opportunity to seek confidential advice and support on a range of concerns, such as infant feeding and nutrition and parenting and child development, from their local health visiting team by text.

Parents and carers with children and young people aged five to 19 will also be able to text the local school nursing team in the same way for parenting advice and support.

Young people aged 11-19 across the county will be able to find confidential advice and support from their local school nursing service on a range of health and wellbeing issues, including bullying, relationships and emotional health, by text.

• Health Visiting under-fives Parent Service – 07480 635514
• School Nursing 5 – 19 Parent Service – 07480 635515
• School Nursing 11 – 19 Young People’s Service – 07480 635516

If you have concerns about the safety or wellbeing of a child

Call Somerset Children’s Social Care on 03001232224 or visit: www.somerset.gov.uk/education-and-families/report-a-child-at-risk/

Childline offer a mental health toolbox for children and phone/online 121 counselling service as well as safeguarding reporting. Call them on 0800 1111 or visit https://www.childline.org.uk/

If you are experiencing domestic abuse

Call the National Domestic Abuse Helpline on 0808 2000247 or visit www.nationaldahelpline.org.uk

Or contact Somerset Survivors on 0800 69 49 999, open 8am-8pm Monday -Friday and 9am-1pm Saturday & Sunday.

Children’s local services

If your child is receiving counselling or support here in Frome most organisations have (or are intending to) move sessions online/over the phone. Please contact the organisation directly. If you are on a waiting list for support they should still be able to offer advice or connect you with provision.

If you would like to access local support go to www.frometowncouncil.gov.uk/your-community/health-and-wellbeing/young-people-mental-health/ and contact a provider.

Pregnancy and babies

The NCT feeding helpline can be contacted on 0300 330 0700

Frome Health Visiting Team – 0300-3230118

Frome Birth Talk – provide free counselling services (via telephone) for pregnant women and new mothers in the local area. For more information visit their Facebook page: www.facebook.com/fromebirthtalk

Frome Breastfeeding group – still offering support via phone, email or text with weekly online meetings. Call Veryan on 07794 678802 or visit Frome La Leche League Facebook page.  There are also regulars at the group, who are keen to offer their friendship via phone or social media to new mums whose contact with others is now limited by self-isolation or self-distancing. Again, please contact Veryan for more information.

Baby cafe Frome is continuing on Fridays at 11am online – visit their Facebook page for the link: www.facebook.com/BabyCafeFrome/

www.facebook.com/FromePandasSupportGroup/

Children with additional needs

https://www.somerset.gov.uk/social-care-and-health/children-with-disabilities-service/

The Pod provide support to parents and young people with additional needs including online youth clubs and parent talking cafes https://www.facebook.com/thepod/

Local family groups

Many local groups are moving online, providing activities or live streaming sessions. Contact individual groups for more info and look through the Frome parents Facebook page for communications www.facebook.com/FromeParents

Education

For the latest information on school closures, exams and support for children eligible for free school meals, visit the Department for Education pages.

Young Somerset has a list of useful free online educational resources.

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