VSI Alliance Update August 7, 2020

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VSI Alliance News & Events

Newsflash from the Voluntary Sector Infrastructure (VSI) Alliance team

VSI Alliance News & Events

Closing date: 28th August

Are you the person to help shape the future of volunteering in Calderdale? We are looking to recruit a development officer with a proven background in developing and delivering volunteer programmes to a wide range of groups and organisations and with a strong commitment to the values of quality volunteering.

Do you have:

  • Previous experience of managing volunteers?
  • An interest in developing new and exciting volunteer opportunities?
  • Energy and enthusiasm to work with other organisations to create a new approach to volunteering?
  • Enthusiasm to help volunteering initiatives within the business world?
  • An interest in working with us on the community-based Social Action pilots?

More information:


Calderdale News & Information

Calderdale CCG Translation Services Available for GP Appointments
NHS Calderdale CCG have produced some videos on the translation services that are available to help people during GP appointments. They are available in Polish, Punjab, Urdu, Czech, and Slovak, as well as English.

Letter to Calderdale Residents: ‘We Need Your Help to Beat Coronavirus in Calderdale’
Letter from the Leader of Calderdale Council, and Leader of the Council Director of Public Health which is to be distributed to all Calderdale households.

Earlier this week:

Local Restrictions – What You Can and Cannot Do
As announced at the end of last week, see what the new local restrictions are as imposed by the government.

Regional/National News & Information

West Yorkshire and Harrogate Health and Care Partnership Weekly Update
This week’s Leadership Message comes from Mike Doyle, West Yorkshire and Harrogate Health and Care Partnership Suicide Prevention Lead and Lin Harrison, who is the Suicide Prevention Project Manager for the Partnership.


Applications Open for Infrastructure Organisations to Support BAME-Led Charities & Groups to Access National Emergencies Trust Funds
UKCF is seeking applications from BAME-led infrastructure organisations to access the new fund. Grants between £5,000 – £20,000 over a maximum of three months are available.

Holiday Food SupportDeadline extended: 10th August, 12noon
Grants will be awarded to help support vulnerable people in the immediate emergency caused by coronavirus (COVID-19) to reduce hunger and/or food poverty over the summer and beyond; and to have a lasting positive impact on families.

Postcode Neighbourhood Trust Grants – Deadline: 19th August
Grants range from £500 to £20,000. Registered charities can apply for grants of between £500 and £20,000. Other not-for-profit organisations can apply for grants of between £500 and £2,000.

Earlier this week:

Culture Recovery Fund for Heritage – Deadline: 17th August
Heritage organisations in England that are at risk of no longer trading viably this financial year can apply now for grants of between £10,000 and £3 million to cover any reasonable costs that helps them recover and become viable.

Lloyds Bank Foundation for England And Wales – COVID Recovery Fund
Launched today, the funding is aimed at small and medium sized charities that are helping people overcome complex social issues such as dependency, homelessness and domestic abuse. A Q&A webinar will be held on 11th August.


Project Worker: Peer Support for People in Crisis – Closing date: 31st August
Healthy Minds, working with the NHS Intensive Home-Based Treatment Team (sometimes called the “crisis team”, part of South West Yorkshire Partnership NHS Foundation Trust) and Calderdale CCG, has an exciting opportunity to try out a different way to support people in emotional distress.

Earlier this week:

WYCAS Accountancy Vacancies:
Do you want to use your accountancy skills and knowledge to make a real difference to communities? Do you like the idea of working in a small team where you’ll have your own caseload, and where there’s flexible working, and plenty of training and development opportunities?

Community Accountant – Closing date: 17th August
Trainee Accountant – Closing date: 18th August



Earlier this week:

The Space @ Field Lane Seeking New Treasurer
Exciting opportunity for a willing and committed volunteer to join the board as a Trustee and take on the role of Treasurer. Could you be the right person to join The Space @ Field Lane’s supportive and inclusive board?

About VSI Alliance:

All staff at the VSI Alliance are available remotely to support you and your organisation at this time with various aspects of your work, along with providing key information and resources. For support/advice, please contact, or visit for more contact details.

We can support you with:

  • Organisational development
  • Social enterprise, business development and asset transfer
  • Governance
  • All aspects of establishing a new group or organisation
  • Quality assurance including Quality For Health
  • Safeguarding support
  • Fundraising and income generation
  • Partnership working
  • Specialist financial advice and services
  • Volunteering brokerage and development
  • Engagement Champions
  • Voice and representation of the VCS sector

Macmillan virtual conference on the affect of coronavirus on cancer patients

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Macmillan invite you to join the cancer patient focus group on Thursday 27th August 2020 at 4pm til 5.30pm.

This is a fantastic opportunity for you as patients and family members to meet with two senior and influential staff in our trust – Dr Jo Dent, consultant oncologist and Helen Barker, chief operating officer for CHFT. The meeting is an opportunity for you as patients and family members to share how you have felt during the Coronavirus pandemic – how have you been affected, what changes have you seen, what should be keep in the future and what lessons can we learn?

The meeting is by video conferencing using Microsoft Teams, so you can join from the comfort of your own home. You will need a microphone and camera on a laptop/phone/tablet and we can help you get set up with the technology beforehand.

If you would like to join this meeting, please contact Macmillan:
or you can call one of the numbers provided at the bottom of this page.

We really hope you will take this opportunity to get involved and help to shape the cancer services provided by our Trust.

Also just a reminder that it’s our virtual coffee support group on Wednesday 12th August at 2pm which you would be very welcome to join. Again please contact us for an invite.

Macmillan Cancer Information & Support Service
Calderdale and Huddersfield NHS Trust

Macmillan Unit  – Calderdale Royal Hospital – 01422 222709
Greenlea Unit –  Huddersfield Royal Infirmary – 01484 343614
Mobile – 07554415564
Website –
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Walk your way to wellbeing

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There are many benefits in taking a brisk walk, even if only for ten minutes. Active Calderdale bring you the details for Local Groups and Inspiration in your way to better health. After all, even the biggest journey starts with a first step!


Walking – Benefits, Local Groups and Inspiration

 A Starter for 10

A brisk ten minute walk each day can make a huge difference to your health and happiness:

  • It gets the heart pumping faster,
  • Can make you feel better, more energetic, improve your mood and meet new friends,
  • Over time, walking can improve your fitness and make it easier to do everyday activities, like food shopping or gardening,
  • and it helps to lower the risk of serious illnesses like heart disease and type 2 diabetes.

It’s recommended that we should be aiming for 150 minutes of activity each week but 10 minutes a day can help, or try 10 minutes 2 or 3 times each day.

If you don’t feel up to a brisk walk then just getting out for a stroll is a great start. Whether you’re walking to work, getting out with the kids, walking to the shops or taking the dog to the park, walking can be simple to fit into your everyday life.

Walking Apps

Doing 10 minutes of brisk walking is a simple, achievable way to add more activity into your day. Start small and build up from there with the NHS Active10 App.

If you want something more advanced, the British Heart Foundation have together pulled 11 free walking apps for you to explore.

Local Walking Groups
Mixy Marchers are a local resident lead walk and talk group in Mixenden, who walk twice a week from Ash Green Lower Children’s Centre, meeting 5.50 for 6pm start. Check out Mixy Marchers FaceBook page for more details.

CREW usually offer free and friendly guided walks around Calderdale, including weekly walks from Keighly Road and Beechwood medical surgeries and Illingworth Moor Methodist Church. These are currently postponed but CREW are sharing  self-guided walks  –  The Mount Tabor route could be started in Mixenden.

St Malachy’s Walk Group are not currently meeting but as restrictions lift , will be walking again from St Malachys Church on the first Sunday of each month at 12:30 and walk 3-5 miles with an option of a meal at the end. Contact Philip on 01422 259761 for more details.


 Zoom Walk
Bored of walking on your own, but not ready to walk with others? Or want to help friends or family get outdoors more? Combine a walk and a catch up with a Zoom chat.

If you have a smartphone, download the Zoom App and set up a call with family or friends. For more help see Zoom FAQ’s.  Make sure cameras are on.

In the top left of the screen is a switch camera icon  which changes the screen from selfie mode (where it shows your face) to normal camera mode so you’ll all be able to see where you and everyone else is walking. This way you can all share interesting things on your stroll, it may be plants in your garden, views across the valley, or places which spark memories.  Before you know it you’ll have had a nice walk and chat and probably learnt some things along the way.


Still need a bit of inspiration?

Living Streets #Try20Tips is for people working from home, workers still heading to their workplace and anyone else wanting to get a bit more active. #Try20 tips can help you find new ways to fit 20 minutes of walking to your day. Go on, spin the wheel and see you’re challenge for the day.


Or check out Walking in Calderdale and see the benefits and ideas Calderdale and Kirklees Recovery College have got from walking.


Stay Safe
Where ever you walk, please remember to keep yourself and others safe by following the local government restrictions.

Pension Credit and Free TV License to over 75

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From August 1st 2020 the BBC has issued new rules regarding the provision of free TV license to those over 75.

In order to receive the free TV license, you need to be over 75 AND you or your partner must be in receipt of pension credit.

Those aged 75 or over are encouraged to check if they are eligible for pension credit. You can do so via the DWP website ( You can find links for the Pension credit calculators below.

According to the Department for Work and Pensions:

New rules will be introduced limiting free TV licences to over-75s receiving Pension Credit on 1 August 2020. Pensioners are being urged to check if they’re eligible for Pension Credit.

The Pension Credit toolkit is an online tool for agencies and welfare rights organisations to use to help older people understand how they could get Pension Credit. More information is also available on GOV.UK as well as a free online calculator.

There is more information on the TV licensing website:

TV license for those aged 75 and over’t%20have,9.30am%2D6.00pm).

Harmony Hub, a new radio segment on Phoenix FM by Awakening Arts

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Awakening Arts are launching Harmony Hub, a radio segment for people with dementia and older people self-isolating.

Before the Covid lockdown they ran a creative group at the Town Hall. They hope Harmony Hub will help bring back some of the sweet and simple human connections that are much missed.

The show will air on Phoenix Fm, our local community radio station on 96.7 FM. It will be on every Monday at 1pm, starting on the 17th of August. We also plan to release the episode as a podcast on our website to increase accessibility.

The show will include some guided movement, listen to some poems and play some memorable songs, do an interview with an inspiring elder and have a guest slot with a local musician. We’ll be supplying a supporting handout which would provide a basis for conversation, memory sharing and some ideas and materials for a related art activity.

Here’s a link to some more information about the project on the Awakening Hearts website:

They  will be having regular check-ins with listeners, both individuals and care home residents, who will help guide and refine the show; making sure that it will best serve older residents at this time.

Awakening Arts  are really keen to reach individuals self-isolating at home and have creativity and reflection packs to send out to people in their homes. If you would like to receive one of their art packs, please get in touch.

Contact Awakening Arts

We need your help to beat COVID-19

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Sadly, the COVID-19 crisis is far from over. We have seen this locally in the last two weeks in particular, with Calderdale being named a national ‘area of concern’ and new local restrictions coming into place from Friday 31 July, following a sustained increase in our infection rates during that period. We can all do our part by:

  • Staying 2 metres apart
  • Wearing a face covering when we are indoors where we might come into contact with others, such as public transport, taxis, shops, museums and places of worship
  • Washing our hands regularly
  • Staying away from crowds and avoid close contact with others such as handshakes and hugs
  • Don’t visit, or have visitors from, other households
  • Isolating for 10 days and get a test if we have symptoms
  • Following the advice of the Test and Trace service if we have come  into contact with someone with the virus.

We must all continue to work together as a whole community. We have done this before, we can do it again.

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Staying Well Telephone Befriending Service for adults in Calderdale

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The Staying Well Hub Team would like to remind you that we are still here to listen to your concerns and help you make sense of what is happening. Whatever you are dealing with, we would like to hear from you because help is always at hand.

The telephone befriending service is how the Staying Well Team can be contacted during the COVID-19 period.

As face to face may not be an option for a while, this service offers a more personal contact to people struggling with isolation.

Staying Well Telephone Befriending Service

Isolation has never been such a concern and risk as it currently is but a chat with a Volunteer Befriender can make all the difference to someone who is lonely.

Right now we are working with volunteers to provide a Staying Well Telephone Befriending Service for adults in Calderdale who want someone to talk to regularly or just want to to hear a friendly voice. And we have volunteers from across Calderdale who can speak a variety of different languages!

This service aims to match clients with volunteers who have similar interests and common ground, aiming to offer a listening ear to those who feel isolated.

If this sounds like what you’re after, ring 01422 392767 to make a referral or visit the Staying Well website to fill out the referral form.

Individuals can refer themselves. In order to refer someone you will need their consent.

All volunteers must go through the safeguarding process run by Calderdale council and the entire process is closely monitored to ensure everyone’s safety.

For more information visit the Staying Well Telephone Befriending service page