Information Now

InfoNOW news 17 September 2021


InformationNOW and the Prevention, Information & Advice Network
National Fitness Day
Nominate your Covid hero
Newcastle Library and Northumbria Uni shortlisted for Award
Festival of Rescue at Newcastle/Gateshead quaysides

Opportunities for Action

Urology month
Appeal for volunteers
Arts Council development scheme

Spotlight On

What do you know about your pension?

Research & Reports

Economic labour market status of people over 50 years old

Resources & Training

Get Started in Health & Social Care
Silverline Memories Life Story Book
Echo boiler scheme
Vodaphone SIM charity cards
DIY advocate

New on InformationNOW this week

This week’s events & activities at a glance
Children and Families asthma webinar, Monday 20 September
Updated articles & organisation


InformationNOW and the Prevention, Information and Advice Network

We held our first new webinar in our Navigating the Maze Series yesterday with the support of speakers from Newcastle Futures, Newcastle Council’s Supported Employment Service and the CNTW Supported Employment Service.  Thanks to the speakers for their enlightening presentations.  There is lots of help available in Newcastle if you lack confidence, need help with digital skills or your have barriers to employment.As a result we have created a new article on Support to prepare for work and updated Looking for work

National Fitness Day, 22nd September

National Fitness Day, September 22nd, marks the 10th anniversary of the campaign which has helped millions of people of all ages, abilities and backgrounds to find or rediscover a fitness activity they love.The theme for 2021 is ‘Fitness unites us’ and the day will see thousands of free and inclusive even ts available for anyone to try, thanks to gyms, pools, leisure centres and other sports providers across the UK, both in person and virtually.  Two opportunities that we know in Newcastle are:

A free gym session for new members when they sign up, existing members can buy a monthly gym pass for £10 instead of £15 and  they will have members on site across our gyms in Lemington and West End Resource Centre who will be able to answer any questions.

Sport Central  Northumbria University
Open day including gym, classes, virtual classes, health assessments and tours.Telephone: 01912273057

Nominate Your Covid Hero

Do you know a local hero who embodies the region’s renowned goodwill? Someone who has gone above and beyond to #BeatCovidNE by helping those around them? Perhaps it was dog walking or pet-sitting. Picking up shopping and prescriptions. Offering companionship and care. There are hundreds of small ways local people in the North East have helped each other.  Now is your chance to say ‘thank you’

The Covid Acts of Kindness Community Award will celebrate one outstanding individual in each of the seven North East local authorities. This is your opportunity to nominate someone – who can be of any age – you think is most deserving of recognition. Nominations open from Monday 20 September and 250 words is all it takes to shine a light on your local Covid hero.I nformationNOW has an article on volunteering and keep up to date with coronavirus information

Newcastle Library and Northumbria University shortlisted for Libraries Connected: Health & Wellbeing Award

The Death Positive Library Project takes place across London, Yorkshire and Newcastle in partnership with a research team from the University of Northumbria. Together the team have been promoting the role of libraries as compassionate spaces to support conversations around death, dying and bereavement. During the pandemic, the team adapted the project which was built for physical library spaces into one suitable for an online environment.

It was recognised that more than ever, safe supportive spaces were needed where people could come together and share their experiences – particularly the bereaved.  Read more on Libraries Connected Awards 2021InformationNOW has an article on Libraries and grief and bereavement and the bereavement benefit

Festival of Rescue on Newcastle & Gateshead Quaysides

From tomorrow, spectators on both the Newcastle and Gateshead quaysides will be able to watch the Festival of Rescue hosted by Tyne and Wear Fire and Rescue Service (TWFRS).The free, two-day family event will provide the opportunity for 300 competitors from 25 UK fire and rescue services to showcase their lifesaving skills in and around the River Tyne.

The Festival sites will be open from 8am until 5pm on both days including Newcastle Quayside; Spillers Wharf; Baltic Square; and Baltic Mill (BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art). 

InformationNOW has an article on: making your home safer

Opportunities for Action

Urology month

September is urology awareness month and hosted by The Urology Foundation.  Organs under the term urology include: the kidneys, bladder and prostate and the male reproductive organs: testes and penis.

It is estimated that 1 in 2 of us will be affected by a urological condition in our lifetime. Our urology health is vital to our quality of life. Diseases and cancers of the kidneys, bladder, prostate and the male reproductive system are becoming more prevalent and devastating the lives of many men, women and children in the UK.

The aim of this month is to raise awareness about organ and reproductive health. The Urology Foundation website explains about health, conditions and how to avoid them, such as drinking plenty of fluids to avoid kidney stones.

You can keep active by taking part in their challenge Step up for TUF (The Urology Foundation) and raising money by  being sponsored to climb the stairs, an escalator or steps at work; choose a target,  such as 42 flights equated to the height of  Big Ben

InformationNOW has articles on: urinary tract infection; incontinence and cancer

Appeal for volunteers: Do you have time to help others or are you just looking for a new challenge?

Citizens Advice Newcastle (CAN) is looking for volunteers to help people with a range of issues as they resume advice sessions at the City Library.  The pandemic has had a severe impact on families across the city and Citizens Advice Newcastle is on the lookout for more volunteers to help with queries on benefits, housing, debt, home energy and Universal Credit. Full training is given. CAN Chief Executive, Shona Alexander, said: ““We are now looking for new volunteers to join our team of advisers, so if you can spare a few hours a week then we’d love to hear from you.”

Advice sessions are running from 10am to 12 noon, Monday to Friday, but should be extended in the coming weeks.

Get involved: Arts Council Area Council Development Scheme

Arts Council England (ACE) is running an Arts Council Area Council Development Scheme in the North. The aim of this is to encourage those who don’t come through traditional recruitment methods to get more involved and make a significant contribution to ACE’s decision-making. By doing this ACE hopes to make space for new and diverse voices and support the development of future leaders. It will also bring new insights into the North Area Council.

This scheme is open to anyone aged between 18 and 35 who lives, works or studies in the North of England and aren’t currently a trustee of any other arts organisation. There’s an open drop-in session on Friday 24 September which people can sign up for to find our more.

Spotlight on

What do you know about your pension?

If you are over 50 years old, then you may be beginning to focus on your future financial security, most of which may come to you in the form of a state pension. However, studies show that whilst over 50% of people between 55 and 64 years expect to live off their state pension, they didn’t know how much that was (currently £9,000) or how to check that they had made the correct  NI contributions.  Many also didn’t know that they could top up their state pensions even though they could afford to.

InformationNOW has an article with links to all the relevant state pension information including calculators and who to contact, as well as an article on National Insurance.


Economic labour market status of individuals aged 50 and over

trends over time: September 2021

HMRC Official Statistics showed that, at end of June 2021, a total of 1.9 million jobs were being furloughed through Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (JRS), representing 6% of eligible employments. Amongst workers aged 50 and over, more than 600,000 jobs were furloughed, representing over one third of workers on furlough (34%), and up from 31% (nearly 800,000) at the end of May 2021.

This sixth annual publication on the economic labour market status of individuals aged 50 and over in the UK shows that:

  • people aged 50 years and over have, like other age groups, been impacted in the labour market by the COVID-19 pandemic since March 2020, including the 12 months covered by this report. It is too early to determine if changes over the past year are short-term fluctuations or the beginning of a longer-term trend
  • being sick, injured or disabled continues to be the main reason why people aged between 50 and 64 years are economically inactive in the labour market (36.9%, or 1.3 million),
  • however 50 – 64 years are also stating retirement as a reason for not seeking work (35.1% or 1.2 million)
  • over 790,000 people aged between 50 and 64 years are either actively seeking work, or are inactive, but are willing or would like to work, a fall from 810,000 in 2020

InformationNOW has articles on: looking for work and self employment

Resources & Training

Get Started in Health & Social Care virtual training

The Prince’s Trust has an opportunity for 18 to 30s looking to get into Health & Social Care employment. The programme is a 4 day virtual course designed to prepare young people for a job interview for live entry level Health & Social Care vacancies in Newcastle, Sunderland, North Shields and PontelandThe course is very thorough and covers many aspects of preparation for interview . They get excellent numbers of young people moving straight into the live job opportunities.  There is a Taster Day on Thursday 30th September 2021
Programme Dates: Monday 4th to Thursday 7th October 2021

To Refer a Young Person email with the contact details of the young person (please ensure you have the young person‘s consent to share their data with them) or use the Eventbrite link on their InformationNOW listing

Life Story Book

During lockdown Silverline Memories developed an in-house Life Story project as an activity that people with dementia and their carers could do in their own time to capture their life histories, likes & dislikes, hopes and fears etc,  but also a section about about bigger questions such as future care, medical decisions, and funeral plans.  It was very popular and it is now available to buy as a workbook from Amazon.  I

Silverline Memories Life Story Book: Capture your personal history, essential information and wishes for the future.: AmazonSmile: Memories, Silverline, Abrahams, Mrs Angela, Coulter, Mrs Sandra: 9798470143570: Books

InformationNOW has an article on: dementia with resources and key organisations to help you or a carer

ECHO boiler scheme

The ECHO boiler scheme re-opened on 06/09/21. Owner occupiers on low income under £30k or benefits can access support if their gas boiler is broken or beyond economical repair. Please send any enquiries or direct client to email

InformationNOW has a section on: energy saving tips

Vodaphone Charity SIM cards

Vodafone has started a new initiative to tackle digital inclusion. The scheme is for charities with programmes supporting digital inclusion. Sims are available until 1st November 2022 or until supplies run out.

The form is very simple and you can get up to 100 Sim cards. If you need more than 100 Vodafone still encourage you to apply and they will work with you to meet your needs.  Find out more about Vodafone’s charity sim cards deal here.

InformationNOW has a section on getting online mobile phones

DIY Advocate

Recite Me has been added to DIY Advocate®, an app that gives people the tools they need to make their voice heard. Recite Me provides a whole set of accessibility tools including translation to multiple languages, screen reader, magnifier, dictionary and control over colour, contrast and font.

InformationNOW has articles on: Advocacy and how it can help you

Updates on InformationNOW

Children and Families asthma webinar, Monday 20 September 12.30 to 1.30 pm

An ask the expert webinar about asthma.  This webinar is primarily for patients, families and carers as well as health care professionals and will focus on responding to children and young people’s asthma questions.

It will be chaired by Olivia Fulton, Research & policy volunteer at Asthma Research UK/British Lung Foundation and parent of child with asthma. Experts include Richard Iles: Advisor to SEL Paediatric Asthma Network (formerly respiratory paediatrician at the Evelina, GSTT), Jo Massey and Jakki Sutherland: Children’s Asthma Nurse Specialists, Croydon Children’s Asthma Service and Julia Moody: Tower Hamlets GP and CCG Clinical Lead for Children and Young People

For further information and to register

This week’s events & activities at a glance

Male peer support group on Mondays NUF
Chinese community radio show

Britain after the Pandemic public lecture online
Zoe Rahman Festival of Jazz
Making Every Contact Count for Mental Health starts

The next health and social care academy course
Understanding the causes of health inequality
Update on Collaborative Newcastle

Articles updated

Support for asylum seekers and refugees
Domestic abuse

Organisations Updated

Last updated: September 17, 2021

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