Your Hertfordshire Rural Affairs and Community News Bulletin
Welcome to our March 2021 eBulletin
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CDA Herts Jobs Pathway is open for business!
Jobs Pathway is a new community employment agency, supporting people facing barriers to employment to find meaningful jobs. Jobs Pathway is a key link with local employers; building working partnerships and enabling successful recruitment into jobs. Jobs Pathway is now receiving referrals of people for jobs; from our partners Emmaus and HACRO. The agency is also working with Disability Advisers in Job Centres. The first Jobs Bulletin has been published. This brings together job vacancies from local employers, welcoming of people who find themselves marginalised. Information, advice and guidance will be posted about charities and other organisations offering support and advice. The Jobs Pathway 'Community of Practice' network will form in the coming weeks. This new network will bring employers, partners and people together, to share good practice and develop services.
The 31st March marks the end of the Project. Saturday 27th March will be the last support group meeting facilitated by Daniella Broome our Project Worker.
As part of the Prject's legacy a video has been created which explains what Sickle Cell Anaemia is, details the stories of the parents caring for a child with the diease and how important the setting up of the Support Group has been to them.
Celebrating the amazing community and school gardens across the UK and will take place from 05 April – 11th April this year. Community gardens and school gardens come in a myriad of shapes, sizes and styles. They all have a different heart and a unique mission.
CDA Herts Community Garden St Albans is one such place which provides a unique space for local people and organisations to freely enjoy its open space.
CDA Herts Supports our Herts RSNs - Rural Support Networks
Good Neighbour Group in London Colney
London Colney has a good neighbours scheme that has worked in the pandemic with 85 local families via 40 volunteers. Antonia Wingate-Martin is Community and Events Officer for the Parish Council and she was charged with organising the support that was offered. This included shopping, prescription pick up, befriending and much more. One of the interesting services provided was a financial health check -many residents were paying over the odds for their utilities and telephone landlines and a simple health check enabled them to save quite a lot of money.
Click Here to read more about London Colney Good Neighbour Group
Click Here to read more about Rural Support Networks
Click Here for a list of all the Villages and Hamlets covered by RSNs
The Restart Grant scheme
The Restart Grant scheme supports businesses in the non-essential retail, hospitality, leisure, personal care and accommodation sectors with a one-off grant, to reopen safely as COVID-19 restrictions are lifted. Grants will be available from 1 April 2021 but you can submit applications in advance. Eligible businesses in the non-essential retail sector may be entitled to a one-off cash grant of up to £6,000 from their local council. Eligible businesses in the hospitality, accommodation, leisure, personal care and gym sectors may be entitled to a one-off cash grant of up to £18,000 from their local council.
We know that isolation and loneliness are on the increase. Loneliness can have a profound effect on our physical as well as mental health. Being lonely is as bad for your health as smoking 15 cigarettes a day. Rigorous epidemiological studies have linked loneliness and social isolation to heart disease, cancer, depression, diabetes and suicide. This will obviously have an economic impact on health care and in other areas, not to mention the effect on the individuals concerned. The Arthur Rank Centre has created a Rural isolation and Loneliness Toolkit. Although targeted at Rural Communities, it's equally useful in other contexts.
The Healthy Hub East Herts has a range of Partner activities to meet your needs.
The options which each Partner offers are listed through the link below. The "click here to book" entries will take you to an eventbrite listing where you will be able to find out more information and register your interest for the session you would like to do. The online session can also be accessed in this way when it is due to take place.
Click Here for the activities list in March & April
Herts Sports Partnership Free Fun Activity Days
Fit, Fed & Read is a high-quality holiday activity programme - including support with literacy ‐ in Hertfordshire’s most disadvantaged neighbourhoods, with a nutritious meal every day, free of charge. Fit Fed & Read school holiday activity programmes operate across Hertfordshire during the school Easter and summer holidays.
Referrals are open, and spaces are filling fast!
This Easter, Fit, Fed & Read will be running:
Week 1: Monday 29 March to Thursday 1 April Week 2: Tuesday 6 April to Friday 9 April
An Integrated care System - Next Steps and The White Paper
Across England, NHS and social care organisations have been encouraged to work more closely together to deliver more effective, joined-up and affordable services.
These improvement plans are called ‘Sustainability and Transformation Partnerships’ (STPs). The STP for Hertfordshire and west Essex is called ‘A Healthier Future’. This document is a summary of that plan and has been produced to encourage as much public debate and involvement in the development of our STP as possible.
East Herts FRONTLINE - Find Local Support Fast
WHAT IS FRONTLINE?
Frontline is a community project that helps the public and frontline workers. Quickly find details on local health and wellbeing services through call-back and referral options.
Frontline was designed by Uttlesford Citizens Advice, but it is really a large community project where organisations and services sign up to improve people’s knowledge and access to local services. Frontline in west Essex is funded by Essex County Council and the NHS’s West Essex Clinical Commissioning Group. Uttlesford’s Council for Voluntary Services is helping to run the services.
Free Rapid Tests are available for those aged 16+ who have no symptoms of Covid-19 and who have to leave home for work or other essential purposes. The process is quick, and your results should arrive within an hour of having the test.
Your Hertfordshire: providing key services throughout the pandemic
Your Hertfordshire, the printed guide to our services which is published and distributed annually, has been hitting doorsteps across the county this week.
Within it’s pages our residents will find lots of useful contact details, a breakdown of our services, our priorities for the year ahead and much more.
The last year has been dominated by the coronavirus pandemic and we have been working with our partners across the county to support our residents through these historically difficult times. This infographic which features in Your Hertfordshire gives an idea of the scale of our response to the pandemic and the hard work of our staff in supporting our residents.
. Harry Bott's March Farming, Wildlife and Garden Reports
Harry reminds us how important it is to provide feed and water for the birds during the cold weather. There's also news about Farm maintenance and Harry's Raised Beds.
Read the full report and more from Harry by clicking below.
Click Hereto download and read Harry Bott's March Countryside Notes
Check before you share
Sharing false information about the COVID-19 vaccine can be dangerous. Check before you share to make sure what you’re reading is accurate. Vaccines can save lives. Ask yourself three questions before passing on #COVIDVaccine info:
Look closely - does the information seem trustworthy?
Check - is it coming from an expert?
Still unsure if it’s true? Don’t share it.
Check before you share. The NHS is the best source of info about the COVID-19 vaccine.
(c) Helena Dolby for Sheffield & Rotherham Wildlife Trust
Let your children go wild this Easter! A new online resource to help local children discover wildlife on their doorstep has been launched by Herts and Middlesex Wildlife Trust, in partnership with Hertfordshire County Council this Easter.
Parents will be able to download a ‘Wild Child’ activity pack for their local nature reserve. The packs, aimed at children aged 5-10, include a map of a nature reserve, a wildlife spotter sheet with things to look out for on your walk, and a ‘My Wild Walk’ activity sheet to complete with details of where you went and what you saw.
There will be five Wild Child activity packs covering nature reserves across the county: Stocker’s Lake in Rickmansworth, Tring Reservoirs, Purwell Ninesprings near Hitchin, King's Meads in Ware and Thorley Wash near Bishop’s Stortford.
West Hertfordshire Hospitals NHS Trust would like to invite you to a virtual public exhibition which runs from Friday 26 March to Friday 23 April 2021.
The exhibition will provide an opportunity for you to see the latest proposals for the Watford General Hospital redevelopment. We have exciting plans for our services as well as our buildings and you can read about these on our website. In addition, recordings from sessions led by clinicians explaining our plans are on our YouTube channel.
Outdoor pools at Hitchin and Letchworth will open this season
Fans of outdoor swimming in North Herts will be delighted to know that this year they will be able to take a dip at the two outdoor pools in Hitchin and Letchworth. The facilities were not able to open last year, due to ongoing coronavirus restrictions.
At Cabinet on 16 March, Councillors agreed to opening the pools for the normal season, subject to Government restrictions.
For the 2021 season, the pools will open on Saturday 29 May. Councillors also agreed in principle to an extension to the season of up to two weeks, and to extending the opening hours for the pools. Both of these decisions will depend on usage during the season and affordability.
The Government has announced a number of funds designed to target support where it is needed most
The Rural Services Network has considered these funds as part of it’s RURAL LENS series of work where we consider Government Publications and Inititiaves through a Rural Lens, to explore how well they consider rural areas and service delivery in rural areas.
CALOR GAS RURAL COMMUNITY FUND - £85K AVAILABLE TO SUPPORT RURAL COMMUNITIES
Leading off-grid energy supplier, Calor, has launched a nationwide search for the very best rural community projects, with £85,000 in grants up for grabs.
On top of this, the Warwickshire-based firm is also launching an exciting new award, the Rural Hero of The Year, which will celebrate those who have gone the extra mile for others during the pandemic.
Designed to provide a helping hand and much-needed funding across the UK to rural community groups who aren’t connected to the mains gas grid, the 2021 Calor Rural Community Fund launched on Wednesday 10th March and entries are open until Wednesday 21st April.
Rural Property Prices have risen by almost 21% in the last 5 Years
UK Investor Magazine reports that the average price of a rural property has risen by 20.8 per cent over the last five years, 3.3 per cent higher than in urban areas.
The 2021 Rural Property Report cites a surge of 6.22 per cent in the price of rural property between 2019 and 2020, as demand increased for homes in rural areas during COVID-19. Of the rural areas with the biggest price increases, property prices in Harborough, Leicestershire, have increased the most – by 33.6 per cent over the last five years with the average house price reaching £328,172 in 2020. The most expensive rural area, according to the report, is Waverley, Surrey, where the average house price is £473,536.
A monthly bulletin facilitated by the Rural Services Network highlighting a selection of current funding opportunities.
Click Hereto download a printable version of the March Funding Digest
Awareness & Celebration dates
March 27 - World Theatre Day, National SEL Day 29 - Family Safety Week 30 - World Autism Awareness Week/World Bipolar Day
01 - Bowel Cancer Awareness Month, IBS Awareness Month National, Stress Awareness Month 05 - Parkinson's Awareness Week
06 - Community Garden Week
07 - World Health Day
10 - World Homeopathy Awareness Week 11 - Good Friday
13 - Easter Sunday
16 - World Voice Day
17 - World Haemophilia Day
18 - English Tourism Week
19 - International Dark-Sky Week
20 - Orchid Male Cancer Awareness Week, MS Awareness Week
22 - International Mother Earth Day
23 - Saint George's Day, English Language Day
26 - The London Marathon
27 - National Gardening Week, International Workers' Memorial Day
28 - World Day For Safety And Health At Work
29 - Stop Food Waste Day
30 - International Jazz Day
Let us know if we have missed anything or if you have anything to add for May. Thank you
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CDA Herts Services available to communities in Hertfordshire
Community Garden St Albans - Plots available
Village Halls Advisory Service - part of the ACRE network
Rural Support Networks
Rural Issues Network
Rural Loneliness Forum
Digital Inclusion Project
Rural Affordable Housing Needs Assessments and Surveys
Village Connectors Project
HMP The Mount Play Area
Sickle Cell Anaemia Carer Support Group
Community Energy Network
Management Health Checks
Health & Safety Training, Audit and Risk Assessment
Health & Wellbeing advocacy
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