Emergency childcare hubs to close
After three months of ensuring that key workers have been able to continue to attend work and keep vital services running, emergency childcare hubs for children aged five and over are set to close on Friday 17 July ahead of the summer holidays. Since schools reopened to host Welsh Government’s ‘Check In, Catch Up – Prepare for Summer and September’ sessions, each school has accommodated their own emergency childcare provision for keyworkers. Provision for children aged up to four who are not in full-time school will continue to be provided via the summer holiday coronavirus childcare assistance scheme. The scheme, which will close to new entrants on Sunday 12 July, is available to support critical workers who are currently in work, and families who have already registered to use the scheme can access it as required for the remainder of the term.
Visiting a care home
In line with latest Welsh Government advice, local residential care homes have been making arrangements to support outdoor visits so that families and friends can see each other face-to-face. The move follows restrictions which were imposed earlier in the pandemic. Families and friends are being advised to contact homes directly to discuss what specific arrangements have been put in place, but they will all have been set up to minimise the potential risk of exposure to the coronavirus. You can find out more about the Welsh Government guidance at the Gov.uk website.
£4m sports fund launched
Sports Wales have launched a new £4m fund to support local sports clubs during the Covid-19 coronavirus pandemic. It will enable clubs to apply for grants of between £300 and £50,000 to help pay for utilities, insurances and other fixed costs, and to make adaptations to ensure activities are safe. The new initiative is in addition to the council’s own Bridgend Sports Support Fund which is providing clubs with grants of up to £1,000 to assist with day-to-day operating costs. It also follows a recent council decision not to charge clubs for using outdoor sports facilities for the 2019-20 season, and to provide clubs that are developing asset transfers with additional support such as pitch, green and wicket surveys, drainage improvements, capital grants to purchase maintenance equipment for green spaces and more. More details are available at the Sport Wales website.
Tennis courts at Maesteg Welfare Park
As lockdown restrictions continue to ease, nets have been raised at the tennis courts within Maesteg Welfare Park and are available for public use. Please observe all social distancing requirements and ensure that appropriate hand-hygiene is maintained.
Newton Beach car park reopens
The privately-owned car park at Newton Beach in Porthcawl will reopen on 10 July. Its operators temporarily closed it during the pandemic to avoid issues with social distancing and local travel restrictions.
Support grant deadline for carers
Carers have until midday on Thursday 9 July to apply for emergency grants of up to £300. Designed to support eligible carers aged 16+ who provide unpaid care for a friend or family member, the grant helps to cover costs incurred as a result of the ongoing Covid-19 coronavirus pandemic for a range of essential items or services. You can find out more and apply online at the Carers Trust South East Wales website.
Looking out for children and adults
The Bridgend Multi-Agency Safeguarding Hub (MASH) is continuing to provide safeguarding services for vulnerable children and adults. You can report concerns about a child to 01656 642320 or [email protected], while concerns about adults can be directed to 01656 642477 or [email protected]. For more information, visit the MASH page.
Changes to domestic abuse service
Calan DVS has re-opened its offices at Derwen Road in Bridgend town centre to provide emergency appointments for people who are experiencing domestic abuse. With social distancing, hand-hygiene and PPE procedures in place, the emergency appointments can be made over the telephone and are initially available between 9am-1pm on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays, and 1pm-5pm on Tuesdays and Thursdays. The service has also continued to make a range of support available throughout the Covid-19 coronavirus pandemic. To speak to someone about arranging an appointment or to find out more, call 01656 815919, email [email protected] or visit www.calandvs.org.uk
Blood donors wanted
The Welsh Blood Service is appealing for pandemic donors to come forward. They will be at the Pencoed campus of Bridgend College on 10 July (9.30am-12.30pm and 2pm-5pm), and at Maesteg Sports Centre on 28 July (10am-12.30pm and 2pm-5.30pm) and 29 July (9.30am–12.30pm and 2pm-5pm). To book an appointment and arrange to make a donation, visit www.welsh-blood.org.uk
Online learning during the pandemic
Bridgend Adult Community Learning is offering a range of free accredited online courses during the pandemic in areas such as tutor-led IT courses, counselling and managing stress. Courses start on Tuesday 16 June, so find out more or enrol today at the council’s community learning page.
Stay alert for scammers
A number of coronavirus-related phishing emails have been reported to Action Fraud. These emails attempt to trick people into opening malicious attachments which could lead to fraudsters stealing your personal information, logins, passwords or banking details. You can find out more about how you can stay alert and protect yourself at the Action Fraud website.
Track and trace reminder
Residents are reminded that official callers from the free Test, Trace, Protect service will never ask you to make a payment or to disclose your personal banking details. Please remain alert for scammers, and report any suspicions to 101 or the Shared Regulatory Service on 0300 123 6696. You can find out more on preventing fraud at www.actionfraud.police.uk, while info about track and trace is available at www.bridgend.gov.uk/coronavirus
Free school meal deliveries
Households that are eligible to receive the weekly free school meals food parcel are being reminded that they must be at home to accept a pre-arranged delivery. Each parcel contains enough food to provide a child with breakfast and lunch for five days, and pupils with special dietary requirements can receive a frozen meal option. Around 5,000 food parcels a week are being delivered to support families whose children would otherwise benefit from a free school meal.
Stay strong at home
The Stronger, Together project is available to support the mental health and well-being of older people while lockdown is in place. It supports and encourages anyone who wants to take up a new activity or share an existing interest with others. Accompanying workbooks and videos are available as part of the service, and you can find out more by visiting the Stronger, Together website.