Emotional wellbeing support for parents, carers and families

Reintegrating back to school life can be a challenge at any time but that demand is even higher during the current climate of uncertainty. Below are useful resources offering advice, guidance and support for parents, carers and families during this time.

Are you worried?

Family Lives – if you’re finding it hard at home with your child and struggling to cope, free confidential advice is available. Call Family Lives on 0808 800 2222.

NSPCC – if you’re concerned about the safety of another child in your community call NSPCC on 0808 800 5000. Call 999 if you believe a child is in immediate danger.

Internet Matters – offer advice and guidance on how to tackle online hate and trolls and how you can support your child.

Fegans – have set up a family hub which contains articles and ideas for parents on how to manage family life during lockdown.

Family Fund – have an active grant scheme for families experiencing hardship. They help families across the UK who are raising a disabled or seriously ill child or young person aged 17 or under.

Find a Foodbank using your postcode.

Kent Support and Assistance Service – may be able to help if you are having serious difficulties managing your income due to a crisis or if you are facing exceptional pressures because of an emergency. The support can be accessed via home essentials in a crisis.

Kent Together – hosts a 24 hour helpline and is available on: 03000 419292. This is a single point of contact for anyone in need of help during Covid19.

Live Well Kent – can help you improve your mental and physical health and wellbeing. It is a free service for anyone 17+. Whatever it is, we’re here to help. We won’t judge you and what we discuss will remain confidential.

Need help supporting your child’s emotional wellbeing?

Lots of hands holding wooden letters spelling out SUPPORTKent and Medway #Hereforyou website – provides access to resources and services. If concerned about a young person’s mental health and are not sure what is needed, call the Single Point of Access (SPA) on 0300 123 4496. Alternatively, if your child is aged 4-19 and struggling with their emotional health, you can access support from the Kent Child Health Children and Young People’s Counselling Service: www.kentcht.nhs.uk/school-health

Young Minds – have information, resources and a helpline for parents: 0808 802 5544.

MindEd – is a free educational resource on children and young people’s mental health for all adults.

Action for Children – have developed a resource that helps parents/carers support children in managing life’s ups and downs.

Anna Freud Centre – offer a range of resources that include free podcasts to help parents/carers manage child and family mental health.

Witherslack Group – offer a series of webinars to help parents/carers of children with special educational needs.

CovibookAn interactive resource designed to support and reassure children aged 7 and under, designed to help children explain and draw the emotions they might be experiencing.

Virtual Oak National Academy – for Reception to Year 10 pupils. They offer daily online lessons, a weekly assembly with a pastoral focus and extra-curricular activities to help families maintain a routine at home. Starline offer a parent helpline for home learning.

Every Mind Matters – includes a section for parents/carers on looking after children during the pandemic.

Mindfulness activities

Waves lapping on the shore with the word Mindfullness written in the sand on the beachHere you will find videos of various mindfulness practices that can be undertaken individually or as a family:

Every Mind Matters progressive muscle relaxation

Headspace – Sunday Scaries – Take a Mindful Walk

Headspace – Sunday Scaries – A Mini-Meditation on Self-Care

Headspace – Sunday Scaries – A Mini-Meditation for our Wellbeing this week

Domestic abuse support

Domestic Abuse Volunteer Support Service – have expanded their services via their helpline.  Contact them on 018982 570538, Monday to Friday between 10.00am and 4.00pm (West Kent).

The Kent Integrated Domestic Abuse Service – is continuing to deliver remote support to individuals and take referrals for all services. They can also signpost to other suitable organisations or consult on support.

Women’s Advice Line: 0808 2000 247

Men’s Advice Line: 0808 801 0327

National Centre for Domestic Violence – A free, fast emergency injunction service to survivors of domestic violence regardless of their financial circumstances, race, gender or sexual orientation.

Telephone: 0800 970 2070 or Text: 60777

Email: [email protected]

Support for victims of hate crime

The public may be exposed to fake news and propaganda about the causes of Covid19. As a result, individuals may look to blame a specific minority group and incite hate crime. Free resources and advice to assist in building resilience against hate crime is available from:

Let’s talk about it

Educate Against Hate

Support for families in Kent

Early Help  provide services that can be accessed locally at a time and place that suits families to help them do well, stay safe and resolve problems at the earliest possible opportunity, before they become more serious. Read the Early Help leaflet for families.

Sharon McLaughlin (SEND Family Engagement Officer) is responsible for building trust and confidence between SEND families and the local area.  Her key partners in building engagement are Kent PACT, IASK and Healthwatch. Note to school staff: if Sharon can help in any way by talking to parents/carers and trying to find out what might work to ease these anxieties, please feel free to contact her on 03000 419493 [email protected]

Bereavement support

A young man is sitting on the floor with his back against a wall with his head in his handsDo you know a child or young person who has experienced loss or a bereavement during Covid19? Find advice, guidance and resources here.

 

 

Useful links and apps

Links:

Partnership for Children – have produced a worksheet of activities (including growing seeds) which can help conversations surrounding difficult changes and loss.

Kent Autistic Trust – have produced Covid19 guidance for parents and carers on supporting children and young people’s mental health and wellbeing during the coronavirus outbreak.

Department for Education – have produced guidance for supporting vulnerable children and young people during the coronavirus outbreak.

NHS Every Mind Matters – having good mental health helps us relax more, achieve more and enjoy our lives more. NHS Every Mind Matters have expert advice and practical tips to help you look after your mental health and wellbeing.

Big White Wall – a community of members who support and help each other and share what’s troubling them in a safe and anonymous environment (aged 16+).

Mind.org.uk – provides advice, support and information on an extensive set of topics from sleep problems to suicidal thoughts.

Safe Hands Thinking Minds – Dr Karen Treisman is a Highly Specialised Clinical Psychologist focusing on dealing with trauma and stress through new and useful information, including videos.

What you should know about returning to school – (Google Document) for young people.

 Short films to highlight the use of play to regulate children’s Emotions (British Psychological Society (BPS) – two short films to help parents, carers and education professionals use play to support children. The first film is for families and  highlights the benefits of using play to help children understand the changes they are experiencing and gives tips on using play to support wellbeing. The second film offers professionals expert advice in play about its role in supporting learning and promoting children’s wellbeing.

Government Department for Work and Pensions A document giving information during the coronavirus lockdown on areas including:

  • Work, financial support and money
  • Boosting work placed skills whilst at home
  • Job Help Tool
  • Tackling Loneliness
  • Information on what you can do if you’re struggling.

Council for Disabled Children – are the umbrella body for the disabled children’s sector bringing together professionals, practitioners and policy makers.  They have a library of resources that you can access.

Beams – is a local charity that supports disabled children, young people and their families.  The disabled children and young people who access their services will typically have one or more learning difficulty, complex health needs, physical or sensory impairment, challenging behaviour, Autism or severe ADHD.  Telephone: 01322 668501.

The Autism Apprentice (in partnership with MMK Mind) – this free programme consists of 2 x 45 minute ZOOM sessions a week, one with The Autism Apprentice to discuss anything autism related that you may require support, advice or guidance. The emotional wellbeing session will be run with Maidstone and Mid-Kent MIND, with a trained counsellor.  Parents/carers can self-refer.  Please contact: Sarah: 07713 482458 or Donna: 07863 044632.

NHS/KCC – provide a Handbook for Families on autism and ADHD in children.

NELFT NHS Foundation Trust – provide information to families awaiting an autism assessment.  These are recorded and can be accessed here:

The Kent Education Psychology Service – has produced guidance around supporting children and young  people’s wellbeing.

Apps:

Sam self-help – anxiety management for people who are serious about learning to manage their anxiety.

Pacifica – calm down in moments of stress or anxiety using deep breathing, muscle relaxation, positive visualisation, mindfulness meditations and more.

What’s Up – when you feel negative thoughts taking over, use the app to help you overcome them.

Wellmind –  is designed to help with stress, anxiety and depression.

Other resources supporting emotional wellbeing