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We are facing an unprecedented situation and children and young people are understandably worried, as well as being vulnerable to other risks whilst they are not in the school environment.  

COVID-19

 

 UPDATED AUGUST 2021

Restrictions may have gone, but COVID-19 hasn't... Let's continue to protect each other so we can all enjoy the city safely. Please, wash your hands regularly, wear a face covering, if you can, in busy and indoor places, and give other people space. 

This page is currently being updated

Local Advice

For the latest City of York Council information on Coronavirus (COVID-19) and services for children, young people and families, visit: www.york.gov.uk/coronavirus 

The Live Well York website offers a number of resources for community support and social care in York, including:

Live Well York have also gathered together useful information which is intended to support our residents throughout the coronavirus pandemic, including:

COVID-19 Helpline for York

If you're struggling to manage, or you don't have any support, but need it because of COVID-19, we may be able to help you through this difficult time. Contact City of York Council on telephone: 01904 551550.

National Advice

Coronavirus remains a serious health risk. You should stay cautious to help protect yourself and others.  Coronavirus (COVID-19): guidance and support - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)

  • Meet outside, or open windows and doors for indoor visitors
  • If you think you have symptoms stay at home and take a PCR test
  • Wear face coverings in crowded places and on public transport
  • Check in to venues when you go out
  • Wash your hands with soap regularly, and for at least 20 seconds
  • Get vaccinated

Please also see the following resoures:

 

Learning from the pandemic

The last year has been difficult for us all. Our lives, and the lives of our children, have changed in ways we couldn’t have imagined. With constantly changing circumstances everyone has been continuously adapting, evidencing and learning about what works to help vulnerable children and families.

The coronavirus pandemic has undoubtedly changed the way we live, learn and work. Over the last 12 months, teams from across the NSPCC have undertaken and published research and evaluation reports that examine the impact of the pandemic on children, families and our staff; capture the NSPCC’s response at a local level; and share learnings from our virtual delivery of services.

In light of this, NSPCC have created a dedicated area on their NSPCC Learning website where you’ll find a range of resources designed to support people working with children and families during the pandemic.

In the ‘What works in supporting families’ section, they have brought together findings from a number of reports they have published during the last 12 months. They share what they’ve learnt about the impact of the pandemic on children, families and staff; capture the NSPCC’s response at a local level; and share learnings and recommendations from our virtual delivery of services that we, and others, can take forward.

Hear from NSPCC practitioners

Listen to NSPCC practitioners, Karen, Tracy and Kim share their experiences of supporting children and families during the pandemic in our new video. Learn about the tools and techniques they’ve used to engage children and families when working with them remotely, using telephone and video calls; how they’ve adapted they ways they work to keep children safe; and how a framework of support provided by managers and colleagues has helped them to still be here for children and families. 

Do you work with children and families? 

Susannah Bowyer, Assistant Director at Research in Practice, talks to colleagues from the NSPCC about what they’ve learned from supporting children and families during the pandemic.

They share their experiences of responding to the immediate needs of children and families when the first national lockdown was announced, and what they’ve learned since, from providing their services using virtual and digital methods alongside face-to-face work where possible.

Talking points

This podcast looks at:

  • Research the NSPCC has undertaken to understand the impact of the pandemic on the children and families they support, and their frontline practitioners.
  • How the NSPCC responded to meet the immediate needs of children and families at the start of the pandemic, and what they’ve done to adapt the support they provide in the face of constantly changing circumstances.
  • What the NSPCC has learned from delivering services both virtually and using a blended model of virtual and face-to-face support.

In addition, Public Health England (PHE) has updated its report about population mental health and wellbeing in England during the coronavirus pandemic. Chapter 7 of the report looks at emerging findings from UK studies of the mental health and wellbeing of children and young people: Chapter 7: Children and young people

Ofsted has published five reports on the effects of the coronavirus pandemic across the sectors it inspects and regulates including: early years; schools; children’s social care; and special educational needs and disability (SEND) provision: OfstedCOVID-19 series

Keeping well: mental fitness, listening and suicide prevention

 

There are simple things we can all do to help prevent suicide.

The importance of listening, kindness, and caring are all themes that have come up more often than usual during this pandemic. These are all very meaningful behaviours which we can all use by developing our awareness and skills to offer these in simple and straightforward ways.

This BBC news article gives a great practical summary about how you can develop your listening skills. The article talks about the S H U S H method: 

 

  • S how you care
  • H ave patience
  • U se open questions (questions that can be answered with yes or no)
  • S ay it back
  • H ave courage 

 

The Kindness website provides tips on kindness that are founded in evidence about why kindness is so important. They have recently conducted a survey on what are the most valued acts of kindness during the Covid-19 pandemic.  

 

The Action for Happiness website has a range of resources that are focussed on kindness and provides examples of acts of kindness, and links to the useful reports such as this Mental Health Foundation report about the evidence of the importance of kindness.

 A recently launched campaign #feelrealyork aims to encourage people to share how they feel, to support people to talk and listen, details can be found at the NHS Vale of York Clinical Commissioning Group website.

  Suicide is a very sensitive issue which many of us can find difficult to talk about. Sometimes this arises from people’s personal or professional experiences of suicide. Often, it can be because people find the topic uncomfortable, worry they may say the wrong thing, appear insensitive, or be out of their depth.  To help you build skills and confidence to be able to support suicide prevention, the Zero Suicide Alliance organisation provides free suicide prevention training which can be accessed Zero Suicide Alliance website, or also from the Talk Suicide website. It is a short, straightforward and clear online course that can be taken by anyone, providing practical and useful ways to help keep people safe.

The Samaritans website has a range of information, including facts and details of campaigns to help suicide prevention. They also provide listening support services every hour of every day every year which can be accessed by calling 116 123 for free. Their Small Talk Saves Lives campaign gives details about how we can all make a difference.

 There are a range of resources available that people can access or be signposted if they would benefit from support that can be found on the www.livewellyork.org.uk site here or York Mental Health Directory here.

 Common myths associated with suicide are unhelpful. This HelpGuide article explains many of these in more detail. Probably the most common myth, is that talking about suicide may give someone the idea. This is not true, talking about suicide can help someone who is having suicidal thoughts feel able to seek help.  Suicide is also not inevitable and talking about it can help prevent it.

If you or someone you know is feeling suicidal, please T A L K: 

 T ell someone what you are thinking and how you are feeling

  • A sk for their help, or seek help
  • L isten to their advice or advice from others
  • K now who to call in a crisis and keep the number with you at all times

 You can call the Samaritans 24 hour helpline on 116 123, ring 111 to access mental health services - 24/7, 365 days a year, or contact your General Practitioner (GP). If you do not have a GP or do not know your GP's telephone number, please call 111

Receiving some training such as the Zero Suicide Alliance training can help you to support someone. For further information about suicide prevention and our York approach, the York strategy can be found on the CYC website, or please email andy.chapman@york.gov.uk to find out more.

  

Archive information

 On Monday 19 July, England moved to step 4 of the coronavirus roadmap and most legal restrictions have now been lifted. The advice originally posted on the CYSCP website at the start of the pandemic has now been moved into the archive section.