Information Now

9 October 2020


Prevention information
What is the health research breakthrough you wish to see
How Fit


World Mental Health Day
National Hate Crime Awareness Week
Let’s talk about feet- Diabetes foot care


Take ten minutes meditation


New and updated information
Relatives and Residents Association
Care Academy
Coronavirus updates


Prevention information

The InformationNOW team and the Wellbeing team have been working on a series of webinars relating to dementia.  Our first speaker was Professor Lynne Corner and the film, which covers research and innovation in dementia, can be found on the InformationNOW YouTube channel.

Radio Tyneside and InformationNOW are partners in the Later Life Audio and Radio Cooperative, LLARC.  This week we are raising awareness of Stoptober with a podcast with Tracey who recently quit and Ailsa, Director of Fresh.

You can also find podcasts on HowFitToday with Dr Steve Parry and Anne and Mary from the Elders Council talking about ageing and tackling ageism #AgeProudNewcastle. Their podcast is at the foot of the InformationNOW home page.

We have also worked with Living Made Easy to redesign Your Equipment Newcastle to make it easier to use and navigate.  Need equipment at home, not sure what you need? Your Equipment Newcastle makes a good starting point. You get a personalised report and links to services that can advise you or to products that you can buy.

What is the health research breakthrough you hope to see in your lifetime?

Multiverse Lab aims to reach 2,000+ people to find out what matters most to them to help shape future health research.

This specially designed website is like stepping into an interactive lab – a lab of many voices. Created by Newcastle-based Unfolding Theatre, you can explore a map of North East health stories, a timeline of the last 100 years of health breakthroughs and listen to other people’s answers. From there, you are invited to record your own answer to the question. They know that not everyone will have access to the internet and a computer so they hope to be able to come and see you in your communities – Covid 19 permitting.  They will bring along the technology so you can experience Multiverse Lab but you can also contribute by ringing them on 0191 580 4901.

Whilst Multiverse Lab is a playful and fun online experience, it also aims to highlight the importance that health research has on our everyday lives.

Multiverse Lab is an innovative project commissioned by a number of partners:

How Fit

HowFit is a new fitness plan designed to help members of the public get fit in their own homes. The programme was created by local Consultant Physician, Dr Steve Parry, who developed HowFit with a personal trainer and professional physiotherapists.

HowFit has been designed to include exercises of varying difficulties, meaning that it is suitable for adults of any age, whether you currently exercise or not and without the need for any special equipment. There are chair based exercises to start people off. The accompanying website has videos to show you how to do the exercises too.

Listen to Dr Parry explain the inspiration behind the programme and how it will benefit us.

See our events and activities section for the website link.


World Mental Health Day, 10 October 2020 #WMHDay

Mental health is about how we think, feel and behave. One in four people in the UK have a mental health problem at some point in their lives which affects their normal daily life, relationships or physical health. This year, with the impact of Covid 19 on how we live, who we see and on those we love, our mental wellbeing is important to each and every one of us.  Mental Health Foundation has ongoing research on how the pandemic is affecting people’s health.

Symptoms that suggest our wellbeing is poor include: feeling sad, losing interest or enjoyment in things, crying a lot or unable to cry, feeling lonely even in company and feeling angry and irritable. Other symptoms may include: worrying a lot about your health despite reassurance from a GP; uncontrollable and unhealthy eating habits; poor sleeping pattern; social anxiety, uncontrollable anger and low self-esteem as well as low mood often related to significant life events, including: bereavement and loss, loss of employment or inability to participate in meaningful activity. Led by Mental Health UK, this year we are each asked to think “mental health for all”.

If you are concerned that you are developing a mental health problem, you should seek the advice and support of your GP as a matter of priority. If you are in distress and need immediate help and are unable to see a GP, you should call the social care 24 hour mental health team or NHS 111 which is staffed by clinicians and call handlers.  NHS 111 can also transfer you to 999 if the situation is urgent.

Helpful wellbeing and support information can be found:

Many of us may have lost someone during this difficult period of coronavirus and the restrictions that have been imposed. Losing someone important to us can be emotionally devastating – whether that be a partner, family member, friend or pet. It is natural to go through a range of physical and emotional processes as we gradually come to terms with the loss.

Bereavement and support information:

Activities to get involved in

National Hate Crime Awareness week, 10 to 17 October

A hate crime is an action or activity that targets a person for their race, faith, disability sexual orientation or transgender status. The impact of such incidents can be deeply harming, affecting a person’s mental wellbeing, can impact their physical health and leave a person scared and intimidated.

Victims of hate crime in Newcastle are encouraged to reach out to support services to report their experiences during National Hate Crime Awareness Week.  The aim is to increase awareness of what constitutes a hate crime, the impact it can have on victims, and how it can be safely reported to the authorities.

Throughout the week Newcastle City Council and a number of partner organisation in the city will discuss hate crime in video blogs online. The aim is to change people’s attitudes around hate crimes, to help perpetrators understand the effect their actions have on people and give victims the confidence to seek justice.

Northumbria police and independent commissioned charity, Stop Hate UK also accept reports of incidents where other key traits are targeted such as age, alternative lifestyle or sexism.

More information on InformationNOW.
Council page on reporting Hate Crime

Lets talk about feet – Diabetes and foot care

Putting your feet first has always been important for people living with diabetes, but it has been challenging at times this year with appointments affected by the coronavirus pandemic.  People with diabetes can get foot problems because there is too much blood glucose (also called sugar) in the blood over a long period of time.  This can stop your nerves working so you might not feel when you’ve cut your foot or burned yourself. It can also make it difficult for your body to heal itself properly. This means even small cuts, blisters, burns or infections can lead to more severe problems.

Diabetes UK’s free online event will help you put your feet first.  The North of England team at Diabetes UK team has arranged a free webinar that will be packed full of useful advice around foot care.  There will be a mix of expert foot care advice and lived experiences, but no gory images. There will also be a live ‘how to check your feet’ session.
On Tuesday, October 20 (8pm-9.30pm) you’ll hear from:

  • Dr Rajiv Gandhi (Clinical Director & Consultant Physician at Northern General Hospital, Sheffield)
  • Donna Welch (Podiatry Operations Manager and Professional Lead for Hull and East Riding Podiatry)
  • Colette Jones (community podiatrist based in South Tyneside and a member of the Northern Diabetes Footcare Network)
  • Diabetes UK volunteer Andy Lavender, who will share his foot care experiences

The session will take place using Zoom and it’s quick and easy to register here. It will be aimed at people living with diabetes and will also be useful for anyone caring for someone with diabetes. Please email Evie if you have any queries.

More on diabetes and healthy feet on InformationNOW


New and updated information

Later Life Audio and Radio Cooperative
Relatives and Residents Association
Care Academy


Infographics in a range of languages
Restrictions explained in Newcastle infographic


Take Ten minutes guided meditation

Take Ten Minutes, a new free guided meditation service, is being trialled in some of Urban Green Newcastle’s parks to encourage people to engage in guided walking meditations to help improve their mental wellbeing.  The guides will help users focus on the present, observing the sights and sounds they encounter in the park with increased awareness of their thoughts, physical movement and breathing.

Park users can access a series of different guided meditations by simply holding the camera on their phone up to the QR codes on the totems placed in the parks. They can then choose the meditation which best fits their walk. Some models of phone require the user to download a QR reader app first.  See more on YouTube. Initial parks included are:  Castle Farm (opposite the Freeman Hospital in High Heaton), Hodgkin Park in Benwell, City Stadium in Shieldfield, Iris Brickfield Park in Heaton and Tyne Riverside Park in Newburn.

Parks and Gardens on InformationNOW

More on Mindfulness and Meditation and online sessions.



Last updated: October 13, 2020

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