Coronavirus Update - Service Delivery
In line with advice from the government we have closed our office at Gracemead House in Hatfield for the time being. We continue to run all of our services supporting vulnerable people across the county. Providing advice to those facing housing issues and preventing homelessness remains our priority.
When we are unable to meet face to face, we are using video and phone calls to support our service users and their families. At this time, we are particularly concerned about the physical health, emotional well-being and mental health of our vulnerable service users. In many instances, we are keeping in daily contact with our young people to ensure that they have somewhere to turn to. We are supporting those in need in practical ways such as supplying health information, supermarket vouchers, helping them to access Foodbanks and to apply for relevant benefits. We are also continuing to work closely with our partners to ensure that the safety of our young people remains a priority.
Over the next few weeks and months, we will provide updates through our website and social media on our services and the impact that these unprecedented circumstances are having.
Our existing telephone numbers are being re-directed to our workers at home and all email contact details remain as before.
In the meantime, we would like to thank all of our funders, staff, partners, supporters and volunteers for their ongoing support in this rapidly changing environment. We sincerely hope that you, your families and friends stay well.
Our friends at Groundswell have put together the following helpful leaflets:
We welcome the call from the homeless charity Crisis and the Liberal Democrats who have asked the government for immediate guidance on how to help rough sleepers who are likely to have pre-existing health conditions that make them vulnerable to the illness. We welcome any guidance that sets out what measures government is taking to ensure rough sleepers get appropriate health checks, what accommodation will be provided so that people can self-isolate and advice for the public on how best they can support people who are homeless during the coronavirus outbreak.
If you have any queries, please contact us.
Important information for all visitors, suppliers and business partners planning to visit or work at Herts Young Homeless Group (HYH):
Drawing on the latest information from the government, we have decided:
- To stop non essential visitors to Gracemead House, Hatfield with immediate effect
- Staff should no longer attend non essential meetings, and where it is essential they should join the meeting via remote technology if possible (telephone or video conference link)
- All volunteering will be suspended for the foreseeable future
- Strong hygiene within the office environment will continue, including regular hand washing and desks being cleaned every 3 hours.
Resources for adults & young people to support well-being at this time of uncertainty
Young Minds have published great resources and ideas about things adults and young people can do to manage any stress and anxiety they may experience in relation to coronavirus: http://youngminds.org.uk/blog/what-to-do-if-you-re-anxious-about-coronavirus/
They also have a mental health advice line available for parents operating between 09:30am-4pm, Monday- Friday: 0808 802 5544
How to look after your mental health when self-isolating: http://youngminds.org.uk/blog/looking-after-your-mental-health-while-self-isolating/
Centers for Disease Control and prevention provide some helpful messages on how to talk to children about Coronavirus: http://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/community/schools-childcare/talking-with-children.html
Every Mind Matters provides general information about looking after your mental health which would be relevant during this challenging time as much as at any other time and provides top tips to improve emotional wellbeing: http://www.nhs.uk/oneyou/every-mind-matters/
Mind website provides useful information about how to cope if people feel anxious about coronavirus, how to manage staying well at home if being asked to self-isolate and taking care of your mental health and wellbeing among other tips and advice: http://www.mind.org.uk/information-support/coronavirus-and-your-wellbeing/
Mind Hertfordshire Network provides a crisis helpline for anyone experiencing mental health distress or requiring emotional support and signposting. Professionals, family/ friends can call on someone’s behalf with the individual’s consent. Crisis Helpline number: 01923 256 391 or visit http://www.hertsmindnetwork.org/
The Anna Freud Centre 'Schools in Mind' have worked closely with settings to help promote whole-school and college approaches to wellbeing. They are conscious that the Coronavirus is creating increased pressure and additional workload for school and college staff at an already busy time of the school year. Therefore, they have produced this document which they hope will give some guidance about how to maintain children’s wellbeing at a time of uncertainty.
They have also developed two videos, one for parents and one for children and young people which will hopefully be helpful.
Addressing social stigma associated with Covid-19 published by the WHO and UNICEF: http://www.epi-win.com/sites/epiwin/files/content/attachments/2020-02-24/COVID19%20Stigma%20Guide%2024022020_1.pdf