Information Now

4 December InfoNOW news


Volunteers wanted to support victims of anti-social behaviour
Winter wellness campaign by CNTW
International day of people with disabilities
Mindfulness and football

Research & Reports

ONS Health Index
State of the Nation: understanding public attitudes to early years

Opportunities for Action

Winter wellness activities
Millin Charity shop local


Spread a little joy with a Christmas card
Winter resilience fund
Coronavirus information



We have published a support for people on a low income article. This pulls together links to information and organisations that can help you whatever your situation.

Look at Money Saving Ideas if you are shopping on a low budget for Christmas this year.  The deadline for the Moneywise Christmas loan is 11 December 2020.

We’ve added a few parks and gardens to our information.

Looking for equipment and aids to help you around the house ? Visit Your Equipment Newcastle.

We have updated free and cheap meals and food banks information.

Volunteers wanted to support victims of anti-social behaviour

Gateshead and Newcastle Councils with Gateshead Volunteers are now running a shared scheme of volunteers aimed at supporting the victims of anti social behaviour. Support and training is provided and all cases will be triaged using tight criteria. Volunteers are welcome from all backgrounds and they are particularly looking for people with language skills and for men who have not traditionally come forward to volunteer,

You will provide telephone support to the victim on a regular basis and will be provided with a mobile phone to do this. You will also complete an evaluation form at the end of your involvement with each victim.
Key skills are:

  • a good listener
  • impartial and non-judgemental
  • friendly and patient
  • flexible and reliable

Please direct any queries to Steven or telephone 0191 433 2701.  Register on Gateshead Council’s website.

Information on anti social behaviourproblems with your neighbours and noise nuisance.

Winter Wellness Campaign by CNTW

Cumbria, Northumberland, Tyne and Wear NHS Foundation Trust (CNTW) is launching a campaign to raise awareness of mental wellbeing this winter. There will also be wellbeing tips and how to  seek help on social media. Follow them on Instagram @cntw.nhs, Twitter CNTWNHS and Facebook. For instance kindness is important. Have a look at the @actionhappiness calendar.
Read 10 things we have learned about looking after ourselves during lockdown

International Day of People with disabilities

This is an important day to raise awareness of the difficulties that people with a disability face in the UK and remember that one in five of us will be affected by disability at some point in our lives.

At the age of 26, disabled people in the UK are four times more likely to be out of work or not in education compared to non-disabled people.  So it isn’t surprising that disabled people between the ages of 18 to 65 represent one third of social care users and seven in ten of households using food banks in the UK contain someone with a health condition and / or disability.

This year’s theme is not all disabilities are visible and aims to spread the word about hidden disability including: mental illness, chronic pain or fatigue, sight or hearing impairments, diabetes, brain injuries, neurological disorders, learning differences and cognitive dysfunctions, among others.

There is support available if you have a disability. Read our section to find advocacy services, equipment and aids, information on disability rights and the organisations that can help you.

Mindfulness and football

The Newcastle United Foundation has released a unique audio track designed to give listeners a 7 minute football mindfulness experience.  The track features all of the memorable sounds you would experience at a United match whilst also allowing you to de-stress, reminisce about happy times and reduce loneliness and isolation.   For a truly immersive experience listen with headphones!

Read information about mental health and who can support you and mindfulness.


ONS Health Index

The Health Index provides a single value for health showing how health changes over time, and can be broken down to focus on specific topics to show what is driving these changes.

It aims to improve the health of the nation by helping to focus public debate and policy attention across government on a broad concept of health and ‘healthiness’, by providing a highly visible and top-level measure of health.

Currently, the domains split the index into three broad areas:

  • Healthy people – focusing on health outcomes such as life expectancy, health conditions and personal wellbeing.
  • Healthy lives – health-related behaviours and personal circumstances such as smoking, alcohol misuse, unemployment and working conditions
  • Healthy places – wider determinants of health, environmental factors including access to green space, air pollution and access to amenities, such as housing, GP surgeries.

The provisional findings suggest that health in England has declined from 2017 to 2018, after remaining stable for a few years. It will be interesting to see findings as a result of the pandemic in 2020.

State of the Nation: understanding public attitudes to the early years

Ipsos MORI conducted a study across half a million people in the UK on bringing up children under the age of five. There are five important findings which includes that  people have been separated from family and friends during the pandemic and at the same time parental loneliness has increased.  Other findings include that 70% of parents feel judged by others and among these parents, nearly half feel this negatively impacts their mental health. Disturbingly, between 18 and 34% of parents have been unwilling to seek help with their mental wellbeing.  Read our mental health article which signposts you to help and support.


Winter wellness activities

The Shipley Art Gallery has teamed up with five local artists from the North East to create an activity booklet for families and adults. Inspired by art from the Shipley collection, they feature fun art and crafts for children to do on their own or with an adult. Activities include calligraphy, embroidery, painting, drawing, decoration-making and origami.


Newcastle City Council has created a festive dream team with Active Newcastle, Connected Voice, sport stars, community champions and performing artists and created a packed programme of winter activities to bring communities together.

Every day throughout the month the #Decembertogether programme will publish an sporting challenge, craft activity, skills challenge or thought provoking performance and encourage residents throughout the city to join in.  All the events have been created with social distancing in mind and can be done with items around the home or in your local community.

The sporting challenges include a keep up challenge from a Newcastle United Women’s team player, crazy golf, try time celebrations with the Newcastle Falcons and spotting items in your local community.

Residents will be encouraged to get creative with challenges like creative writing from New Writing North, cook-a-longs with Healthworks and creating a family snowman.

Communities will be able to get their dancing shoes and singing voices ready by taking part in Circus Central training and joining a pop-up choir.  There is something for everyone to take part in and enjoy throughout the month.

Millin charity

Why not buy local at the Millin Charity Facebook shopping event on Saturday from 10 am to 5pm?  Vibrant masks, soap, festive floral arrangements and vintage homeware are just some of the items you can see and buy.

The word ‘millin’ means ‘togetherness’ in Urdu, Bangladeshi and Hindi – this conveys the fundamental purpose of their charity and they support enterprise including a trading collective.

Spread a little joy with a Christmas card

Mental Health Foundation has created a Christmas card for you to colour and send to someone who is lonely, isolated or anxious.  You can print it out or colour it digitally.

Winter resilience fund

County Durham Community Foundation is offering financial support for voluntary organisations and community groups in North Cumbria and North East England  that are providing health and wellbeing support and have struggled financially during COVID-19.  The deadline is 11th December

The funding is based upon three principles:

  • psychological support at grassroots level
  •  Peer produced mental health self-management training
  • Non-clinical, bespoke, holistic community support

The funding is expected to deliver the following outcomes:

  • Retention of much needed community resources.
  •  Increased capacity to support the most vulnerable over the winter period.
  •  A reduction in loneliness and social isolation.
  •  People can be supported appropriately whilst shielding

Coronavirus information

Making a Christmas bubble with friends and family

Special arrangements are in place from 23 to 27 December. This also allows travel from one tier to another during this period.  Please read the Government guidance.

Shopping in town
From Wednesday please look at the app How Busy is Toon which has been updated and check car parking; try and park on the outskirts and walk in. Social distancing and masks are required in town.

Tier 3 restrictions for Newcastle and the North East.

The market opens this weekend and it will run Saturday and Sunday in the two weekends leading to Christmas.

Quick links to online activity

We’ve added information on 18 places to travel to in lockdown from Disability Horizons including the Acropolis, Taj Mahal and Machu Picchu.

Organisations Updated

Leonard Cheshire
Sugley Dene

Last updated: January 21, 2021

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