We are experiencing an unprecedented time due to the Coronavirus outbreak. It is important to try to look after yourself and your family both mentally and physically during this time. This page is designed to offer some supportive advice for families.
Below are links to pages which can offer some practical advice and links to videos and resources which you may find useful.
We appreciate that families may be feeling overwhelmed and that there is a lot of information around at the moment. Our advice would be to have a look at the information and links, it may work for you and your family, it may not. Either way we understand that you will be doing the best you can under these challenging circumstances.
Wearing a face covering on public transport
The government has made it compulsory for passengers on public transport to wear a face covering from Monday 15 June.
The rule applies to passenger’s on-board buses, trams and trains – they don’t need to wear a face covering while waiting at a stop or platform, or in bus stations and interchanges.
A face covering isn’t the same as a surgical face mask. It can be a scarf or bandana, or can be made at home. The most important thing is that it should cover the mouth and nose. The government has given instructions on how to make and wear a face covering here https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/how-to-wear-and-make-a-cloth-face-covering/how-to-wear-and-make-a-cloth-face-covering
Face covering exemptions
While it is expect everyone to wear a face covering if they can, the Government has stated that anyone who has a justifiable reason on the grounds of health or disability will be free to travel without wearing one.
Government guidance on exemptions is still in development but, following an equalities impact assessment, the Department for Transport has confirmed that the exemption will apply to those with:
- Breathing difficulties and other respiratory conditions.
- Conditions affecting their dexterity, meaning they are not able to put on a face covering.
- Mental health conditions such as anxiety or panic disorders.
- Other non-visible disabilities such as autism.
- Cognitive impairments, including dementia, who may not understand or remember the need to wear a face covering.
- Visual impairments, with a restricted field of vision, particularly if any residual vision is at the lower edge of the normal field of view.
- Impairments which would make it difficult to put on or take off a face covering safely, accurately, consistently or without pain.
The exemptions also apply to those who rely on lip reading. This includes carers who are travelling with someone for whom a face covering would make communication difficult.
Passengers will be able to remove their face covering for eating and drinking if necessary and taking essential medication.
This list isn’t exhaustive and exemption will also apply to anyone who has a legitimate health or disability reason for not wearing a face covering, as outlined above.
Further help regarding face coverings
ASC Advice from the National Autistic Society (150KB pdf)
Guidance on face coverings in an easy read format (1323KB pdf)
How to make a face covering from a sock – easy no sewing involved
Please see the link below for a message from the Head of Service for SEND:
These can be difficult conversations without clear answers at the moment. Please find some links below that may help:
- Talking to children about Coronavirus
- COVID-19 Booklet for younger children
- Easy read Coronavirus leflet
- The Anti-Baddies Resilience Toolkit
- Nursery book explaining COVID-19
- Talking yo young people about world trauma
- COVID-19 social stories and resources for children with ASC
Please see the links below for information and guidance from Rochdale Additional Needs and Educational Psychology Services that may help with learning:
You can contact Rochdale Additional Needs and Educational Psychology Services Helpline on 01706 926400
Open Monday to Friday from 9am to 4pm.
As our staff are currently working away from Number One Riverside, you will be asked some questions regarding the nature of your enquiry so we can connect you with the most appropriate professional.
Or you can email the service at: email@example.com, and provide some brief information so we can forward your request appropriately.
Being at home caring for your children for extended periods can be confusing and unsettling for them and you. Below are some links to information which may help you to navigate this:
It is important to try to look after yourself too during this difficult time. Please find some links below that may be useful:
- Looking after yourself
- Managing difficult behaviours
- Help for parents and teenagers
- Barnados parents guide COVID-19
Rochdale Parent Carers Voice have been working hard to provide information and support for parent/carers. Their details are as follows:
Telephone: 01706 358326
Facebook: Rochdale Parent Carers Voice Chat:
If you would like to chat to other carers online or get online support you could try an online forum.
Before using any online forum make sure you check out the advice on the forum on how to use it safely including community guidelines, controlling your privacy and looking after your safety.
Forums for adult carers
- Rochdale Carers Hub (Support for Carers)
Forums for young and young adult carers
For those families who normally receive short break support, please see the link below for the current guidance. Short Breaks can include overnight respite support, community outreach activities, sitting services within the family home, personal care, direct payments for specific activities and personal budgets.
Advice for helping to keep a child with complex health needs safe during this time please see: https://www.wellchild.org.uk/2020/03/18/ten-ways-to-keep-my-child-with-complex-health-needs-safe/
Sports Works – Please contact them to book onto their zoom short break sessions - Sportsworks Short Breaks Virtual Sessions - Poster (360KB doc)
Link4Life – Please follow the portal for crafts, cooking, relaxation and exercise sessions for children and adults https://link4life.smart-exercise.com/
Barnardos - Please contact them regarding their Virtual Short Breaks Groups, click on link for more details: Virtual Short Breaks Groups - Poster (807KB pdf)
If you or your child would like to speak to someone anonymously, you could try calling a helpline or visiting websites such as Shout and ChildLine.
Shout is a crisis text line that provides free, confidential support to anyone at crisis at anytime, anywhere, 24/7 via text.
- text SHOUT to 85258 in the UK to text with a trained Crisis Volunteer.
- text with someone who is trained and will provide active listening and collaborative problem-solving.
For further information please see their website: https://www.crisistextline.uk/
ChildLine provides a confidential telephone counselling service for any child with a problem. It comforts, advises and protects.
- call 0800 1111 any time for free.
- have an online chat with a counsellor.
- check out the message boards.
For more information please see their website: https://www.childline.org.uk/
The Mix provides help and advice for under 25’s around everything from mental health to housing issues. It has a free 24/7 crisis messenger support across the UK.
If you’re aged 25 or under, and are experiencing any painful emotion or are in crisis, you can text: THEMIX to 85258.
Telephone: 0808 808 4994 for FREE 7 days a week 4pm to 11pm.
For further information please see their website: https://www.themix.org.uk/
Should you feel that you or your family, or someone you know, is at risk of harm or are struggling to cope, you can speak to someone using the numbers below.
- If you need immediate safeguarding support, please contact the Complex Early Help and Safeguarding Hub on 0300 303 0440 (8.30am to 4.45pm)
- Emergency Out of Office Hours call 0300 303 8875 for emergencies only. Safeguarding Hub email: firstname.lastname@example.org Or call 999.
- For disabled children and their families, already known to the Rochdale Children with Disabilities Team, please call the CWD Duty line on 01706 925900.
Mind is a mental health charity in England and Wales offering support, including legal advice.
Helpline: 0300 123 3393
Telephone: 01706 752335
Wellmind (free app)
WellMind is a free NHS mental health and wellbeing app designed to help you with stress, anxiety and depression. The app includes advice, tips and tools to improve your mental health and boost your wellbeing. (Available on iOS and Android):
Cove (free app)
Free, personal music journal to help you with your emotional and mental health. Trusted by the NHS. (Available on iOS):
Rochdale Educational Psychology Service
During the Coronavirus outbreak some families may sadly experience the death of a loved one. The below information and links are designed to help navigate the practical and emotional elements of making arrangements following a loved ones death during the Coronavirus outbreak.
Advice and guidance in response to the virus is changing frequently. At the time of this information being gathered this reflects current advice, however this may change in the future.
What to do when a loved one dies
Please see the below document for guidance around what to do following the death of a loved one.
How to register a death
Please see the below document for guidance around where and how to register a death and what information and documents you will need.
Funeral service during COVID-19
Things may feel different and take longer than they usually would when organising a funeral service during the current COVID-19 outbreak. Each area and funeral director will be different and will depend on their capacity at that time.
Here is a useful guide about what to expect:
Emotional support following bereavement
The passing of a loved one is a difficult and emotional time and everyone deals with grief in their own way. Things may feel especially pressured during these uncertain times because of the pandemic. If you have suffered a bereavement, the below links might offer some help and support to help manage your grief.
Cruse Bereavement Care
Free helpline: 0808 808 1677 - they are open Monday to Friday 9.30am to 5pm (excluding bank holidays), with extended hours on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday evenings when they are open until 8pm.
Child Bereavement UK
Provides confidential bereavement support, information and guidance to families and professionals. The helpline team is available to take calls and respond to emails and Live Chat Monday to Friday 9am to 5pm (except Bank Holidays).
Helpline: 0800 028 8840
Live chat via the website: https://www.childbereavementuk.org/coronavirus-covid-19-information.
Offers comprehensive advice to carers and their families about what to do when a loved one dies, including issues around benefits, housing, Wills and probate. They are open Monday to Friday 9am to 6pm.
Helpline: 0808 808 7777
Rochdale Educational Psychology Service
Education, Health and Care Plans (EHCP): temporary changes to the law due to Coronavirus (COVID-19) – 1 May 2020
For further guidance please see link below:
Helpful links and resources for children with Visual Impairments please see below:
Visual Impairment - Support and Resources (20KB doc)