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Learn to spot the signs of child abuse

Sefton Council is supporting a national campaign that aims to highlight the support available to tackle the difficult subject of child abuse.

 Together, we can tackle child abuse, encourages members of the public to help protect children and young people by reporting any concerns of abuse or neglect.

 We all have a role to play in protecting children and young people from child abuse and neglect. But right now, some people do not report their concerns because they’re not certain of the signs, don’t know where to report anything or are worried about being wrong. This means that local councils could be missing out on vital information they need to keep children safe from harm.

 The national campaign aims to tackle the barriers that stop people reporting, educating people about signs to spot and how to report, so that children and young people at risk get the help they need more quickly.

 Working in partnership with national and local agencies and charities it hopes to establish a new social norm that encourages the public to act on their concerns if they believe a child is at risk.

 Cllr John Joseph Kelly, Sefton Council’s Cabinet Member for Children, Schools and Safeguarding, said: “It is important that we work together to tackle child abuse.

 “Many people do not act because they are worried about being wrong. If you are concerned a child is being abused or their safety is at risk you can get in touch with the Sefton Council anonymously. “

 Child abuse. If you think it, report it. To find out more about the national campaign visit gov.uk/tacklechildabuse.

 To report any incidents in Sefton you can call 0345 140 0845 between 8am and 6pm. Out of hours contact the emergency team on 0151 934 3555. For more information visit www.sefton.gov.uk/reportachildatrisk

One Vision Housing awarded £10k to host events to tackle loneliness

Sefton-based social housing association, One Vision Housing have been awarded £10,000 by the Big Lottery Fund to support ‘Celebrate the Good Times’, a series of four community events which aims to bring people together and tackle social isolation.

Social and retirement housing provider One Vision Housing (OVH) are addressing the issues of loneliness and lack of social interaction in older generations.

Studies show that social events can improve mental and emotional wellbeing as well as lower depression and anxiety.

The housing association successfully applied for National Lottery Awards for All funding towards four, free entry, community events taking place between June and December 2018.

OVH are working with different local organisations to invite individuals who would benefit from the social interaction afforded by the events.

The first of the four events was The Great Get Together (a More In Common project in partnership with the Jo Cox Foundation) which took place at the Bootle Firwood Cricket Club on Friday 22nd June.

Other events include a Suffragette-themed afternoon tea with live entertainment to celebrate Older Person’s Day in October, a WWI centenary event involving the Armed Forces and local veterans, and a Christmas Day Lunch where guests, who may be spending the holidays alone, can enjoy a three course meal in the company of fellow attendees and volunteers.

OVH Head of Customer Empowerment, Ann Owens said: “We were overjoyed to be awarded this funding which allows us to reach more people in our communities. It’ll make a real difference to those who may be socially isolated and wanting to get out a bit more and meet new people.”

For more information about One Vision Housing and their work in the community, visit ovh.org.uk

Don’t score an own goal this week! Stay cool in the hot weather

With weather forecasters predicting a hot, sunny week ahead, and the bonus of another England football match, health leaders in Sefton are encouraging people to stay cool. 

 If you’re combining the footie with a few beers and a BBQ afterwards, remember that alcohol increases your risk of dehydration. Don’t score an own goal; take care to stay hydrated and use sunscreen.  

 With temperatures predicted to reach 28°C on Merseyside, sun worshippers are being urged to take it easy in the heat by following this simple advice:

  • Drink cold drinks and avoid tea, coffee and alcohol which can dehydrate you
  • Use sunscreen with a SPF of at least 15, make sure that it is still in date, follow the pack instructions and apply at regular intervals – otherwise it is ineffective
  • Use sunscreen together with shade and clothing to protect your skin from burning – never use sunscreen as a reason to stay longer in direct sunlight
  • Make sure you have water with you
  • Check on elderly and vulnerable neighbours and friends who may find the heat too much. The heat can be dangerous for the very young, older people or those with serious illnesses. In particular, it can make heart and respiratory problems worse.

 Debbie Fagan, chief nurse at NHS South Sefton Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) and NHS Southport and Formby CCG, said: “Most of us will be making the most of the warm weather we’re currently enjoying, but it’s important we don’t end up regretting it either.

“Sunscreen, shade and plenty of water, especially if you’ve been drinking alcohol, are the three main things you should be doing to keep yourself healthy.

“If you feel unwell after being in the sun for some time, it’s a good idea to go somewhere cool to rest and have a cool shower or bath.  If you are breathless, or are confused or dizzy, call NHS 111 straight away, they’ll be able to give you more advice.”

 Your local pharmacy can also help provide over the counter remedies during the summer.   The NHS Choices website is also full of help and advice www.nhs.uk.

Derby Park set for action packed family fun day

The Friends of Derby Park are busy preparing for a summer music event, at the Bootle based Park next month.

The annual Derby Park Music and Fun Day takes place on Sunday July 22, from 12pm till 3 p.m. featuring St Helen’s Brass Band (2 – 3pm) and Serendipity Barber Shop Quartet (1 – 1.30 pm) with live music throughout the day, with crafts for the children, and pony rides from Shy Lowen Pony Sanctuary.

Be sure to bring a picnic – and of course the ice cream man will be there too!

Hosted by the Friends of Derby Park, with help from Sefton Council, the annual summer fun day is a popular event in the local calendar and attracts hundreds of families each year to the beautiful park on Fernhill Road.

The event is free to attend with activities starting from 12pm.

Sefton joins Women’s Aid to call for an end to World Cup related Domestic Violence

Sefton Council is backing the ‘Football United against Domestic Violence’ campaign by Women’s Aid to raise awareness of a rise in domestic abuse during the World Cup.

Studies have found that incidents of domestic abuse rose by 38% when the England team lose when compared with the days that England did not play during a World Cup.

Cllr Trish Hardy, Sefton Council’s Cabinet Member for Communities and Housing, said: “While we’re cheering on the Three Lions this month, we should not forget that there exists a small minority who use the tournament as an excuse to commit horrid acts of abuse.

“In previous World Cups, cases of domestic violence rose by an average of 25 per cent after an England match, win, lose or draw. While the vast majority of fans are good natured and enjoy what is an incredible spectacle, there is a small minority who will become more violent and put others at risk during this time.

“At Sefton we fully support Women’s Aid and their ‘Football United against Domestic Violence’ campaign, as we call upon the football community to sign a pledge to make a positive difference to raise awareness and reduce the amount of domestic abuse now and in the future.”

Katie Ghose, Chief Executive of Women’s Aid, said: “Categorically, football does not cause domestic abuse, the behaviour and actions of abusers who exert power and control over their victims cause domestic abuse.

“However, domestic abuse does not happen in a cultural vacuum. The sexist attitudes, chants and behaviour at football matches encourage an environment in which women are belittled and demeaned.

“Together, we can send out the powerful message that domestic abuse is always unacceptable and that there is no place for violence in football whether on or off the pitch.”

For more information about the Football United against Domestic Violence campaign visit www.womensaid.org.uk

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