Western Area FYI – Issue 3

Winter will soon be gone and we can begin to look forward this month to 11 hours of daylight and also hopefully this third issue of FYI will brighten your day. FYI, is your monthly round up of all things family support and early intervention/ prevention.

Download Issue 3 

(Note: Newsletter will download directly to your device.  Look out for the pop-up box and click on open file when it appears)

If you would like to contribute upcoming consultations, training, articles, or events that practitioners from the community, voluntary or statutory sectors within the Western Trust will find useful please contact:

Dr Priscilla Magee – Mobile  07880723076     priscilla.magee@westerntrust.hscni.net

Paul Sweeney – Mobile  07387259117

Western Area FYI – Issue 2

Happy New Year!
Welcome to the second issue of FYI, your monthly round up of all things family support and early intervention/ prevention.
If you would like to contribute upcoming consultations, training, articles, or events that practitioners from the community, voluntary or statutory sectors within the Western Trust will find useful please contact;

Dr Priscilla Magee Mobile 07880723076
Paul Sweeney
Mobile 07387259117

Western Area FYI – Issue 2

Western Area FYI – Issue 1

Welcome to Issue 1 of WHSCT FYI (For your information)

Download Issue 1 

Please find your monthly update of all things family support and early intervention and prevention across the Western Trust. Please share with your teams and families and if you would like to sign up for a monthly FYI email, have a new service beginning in the Western Trust or you wish to highlight your work please feel free to make contact with the Locality Planning Coordinator in your area.  Contact details are located in the FYI.

This is the first FYI and it is hoped that this will grow and develop over time with your very valued input and feedback.

Western Area Outcomes Group Funds LPGs to Take Steps to Help Increase Access to Period Products

A survey by Plan International UK found that one in ten young women aged between 14 and 21 in the UK cannot afford to buy sanitary products and one in seven struggled to afford them.  There are concerns that girls miss days at school and miss out on taking part in many other activities.  Sanitary products are the least donated items in foodbanks.  This is an issue that has been raised by the Locality Planning Groups in Western Outcomes Group Area, with members concerned that Period Poverty has been increasing due to Covid-19 with increased number of families have been faced with food and fuel poverty too due to being furloughed/made redundant during lockdowns. Therefore the Western Area Outcomes Group committed £15,400 of their 2020/21 funding to helping those who are faced with period poverty.

Tom Cassidy Interim Chair of the Western Area Outcomes Group explained “Period poverty is the lack of access to sanitary products and/or having a poor knowledge of menstruation, often due to financial constraints.  This can be caused by a wide range of reasons, but ultimately period poverty can negatively impact on a girl or woman’s ability to lead her life in the way that she wishes to do.

It is important to remember that period products are every bit as essential as other essential items that we take for granted such as hand soap, hand towels and toilet rolls.  All of which we can freely access in any public building.

Women and girls can’t opt out of having periods, but we can opt in to highlighting the need for a more equitable system that provides better access for those in need and that’s why we thought it was very important to do something proactively to address the issue of period poverty in the Western area.  Many families experience this issue as a type of hidden poverty and it is important to raise awareness of the prevalence of this issue and to reduce stigma in the hope that girls and women experiencing period poverty can reach out for help if it is needed”.

The funding was shared across the six LPGs in the Western area.  This enabled a lead organisation in each to purchase products to distribute through the LPG members to anyone who needs them.

Two groups negotiated with local shops and four of the groups worked together to negotiate a reduced price from Savage and Whitten Wholesale.

Rioghnach Murphy Chair of Strabane Locality Planning Group said “The Period Poverty Campaign has been a very successful endeavour and Strabane Sure Start was delighted to support it on behalf of the Strabane LPG.  Uptake in the Strabane area has been very high and many have benefitted.  We believe that period poverty has no place in the 21st century and that society has a duty to ensure that there are no barriers to education, sport or socialising events because women and girls do not have access to basic sanitary products.”

Fermanagh LPG Chair Mark Rodgers highlighted “The Fermanagh CYPSP Locality Group working along with Group member organisations and Hub Partners have been able to circulate a range of sanitary products across Fermanagh and Tyrone to help address the issues related to period poverty for women and girls across our local area.  This scheme has not only provided direct practical support, it has also helped to break down the stigma and taboo associated with periods and Period Poverty”.

Bogside & Brandywell Health Forum and Outer West Family Support Hub both welcomed the distribution of products within the Derry LPG area.  Michaela O’Hagan, FACT Coordinator said “Bogside and Brandywell Health Forum would like to thank CYPSP for their kind donation that allowed us to acquire much needed sanitary products.  These products were distributed to organisations in Derry who support adolescent and young women, they have reached community centres, youth groups and family HUBS in reinforcing the positive message of the Period of Poverty campaign”.  Frances Outer West Hub Coordinator noted “The Outer West Family Support Hub is very grateful for the period products that we received. The products were distributed to schools and youth clubs in the Outer West area of the city. Girls and young women will benefit from the generous donation”.

Fermanagh and Omagh Locality Planning Groups Get Up To Speed With Financial Wellbeing for Families During COVID 19

Fermanagh and Omagh Locality Planning Groups Get Up To Speed With Financial Wellbeing for Families During COVID 19

If ever we doubted the importance of financial wellbeing, this pandemic has brought it to the fore and demonstrated how vital the work Money and Pension Service (MaPS) are doing in this field.  In August MaPS Partnership Manager, Margaret McCloskey facilitated for the Fermanagh and Omagh Locality Planning Groups an online training platform session. During this, Margaret outlined the resources that could be used extensively within our work channels, presenting key information to eighteen members who attended the session.

Members have requested that MaPS are invited for another date, due to the success of this meeting – if you are interested in attending this session, please let me know priscilla.magee@westerntrust.hscni.net

https://www.moneyadviceservice.org.uk/en  – there are 8 core money matters topics on the yellow coloured toolbar at the header of the homepage.  Each topic breaks down into a library of information helping the reader develop their knowledge and understanding, with supporting tools and calculators.   MaPS are happy for us to use the information freely from their website but should you put this into print, please include their logo to endorse the validity of the information.

Three further reasons to visit the Money Advice site are as follows:

  • With furlough and payment holidays coming to an end many people will be struggling financially and will need guidance on what they need to do to support their financial wellbeing.  The Money Navigator tool https://www.moneyadviceservice.org.uk/mntdemo – asks a series of questions and produces a personalised action plan with a full support plan of what to do next.  I highly recommend that you carry out a test of this highly effective tool to obtain an awareness of how good it could be for your clients.   Danske Bank has added the link to their website for their customers as an example of its endorsement for the tool. 
  • Money Manager https://www.moneyadviceservice.org.uk/en/tools/money-manager is designed to help people making a new Universal Credit claim or moving to Universal Credit from existing benefits. On completion of 11 questions the tool will produce a personalised advice plan which could include details the person was not aware of, to help them make the most of their money.  I would recommend testing this tool prior to promoting it to your clients.
  • You could obtain support for your clients through launching an online chat or communicating with the Money Experts through Whatsapp or speaking with them through their confidential helpline number. Please scroll to the bottom of the https://www.moneyadviceservice.org.uk/en homepage for their contact details. MaPS welcomes communication from you or your clients directly – please feel free to pass this information out.   They can also offer a translation service through their helpline – please indicate this requirement at the beginning of the call.

If you would like a to have a one to one meeting with Margaret McCloskey to explore other possible support areas she could help with – please make contact with her initially by email – Margaret.McCloskey@maps.org.uk