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Sefton Council to provide free school meals during half-term

To meet the needs of local children and their families during half-term, Sefton Council will be providing free school meals. You can apply using the e-form provided on the dedicated October half-term free school meals webpage 

Cllr Trish Hardy, Cabinet Member – Communities and Housing said:

“Sefton Council are putting in place a scheme to support children and their families accessing free school meals in the borough during this half term. We will be sharing more information on how to access the scheme as soon as possible.

 “We will also continue to provide additional funding and support to our local voluntary sector partners, including the local food banks who are well stocked to enable them to help some of Sefton’s hardest hit families during these difficult times.

 “Our family wellbeing centres in Talbot Street (Southport), Marie Clarke (Bootle) and Netherton also remain open to families who need their support during half-term. We have also increased the funding available to our Emergency Limited Assistance Scheme, and would encourage anyone in Sefton who may need extra support at this time to contact the council on 0345 140 0845.”

A message from the Sefton Director of Public Health to parents and carers during half-term 

Dear parents and carers,

On 12 October 2020 a national system of local COVID alert levels was introduced.
Central government imposed ‘Very High’ (Tier 3) alert level regulations for Sefton and the rest of Liverpool City Region on 14 October 2020.

With schools and educational settings due to break for half term, we wanted to provide some information about what these measures mean so that you can consider these circumstances when planning half term activities. It is now more important than ever that people follow these latest measures.

Health care leaders from across Merseyside are also encouraging all residents to play their part by:

1. washing your hands
2. avoiding crowds
3. keeping your distance
4. not meeting other households in houses or indoor venues, e.g. restaurants
5. using face coverings – these should cover the nose and mouth
6. staying at home and getting tested if you have symptoms no matter how mild – the main symptoms are a high temperature, a new continuous cough or a loss or change to your sense of smell or taste. Tests should be booked at www.gov.uk/get-coronavirus-test or by calling 119.
7. following self-isolation advice if you are the contact of a positive case or a household member of a symptomatic individual Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

What do the measures mean?

The measures state that it is now against the law to meet socially with friends and family indoors in any setting unless they are part of your household or support bubble.

This includes private homes and indoors in hospitality venues, such as restaurants. You must not have children from other households or families to stay in your home, for example for dinner or a sleepover. You must also not meet with people outside of your household or support bubble in a private garden or in most outdoor public venues.

You may continue to see friends and family you do not live with (or have formed a support bubble with) in groups of 6 or less, including children of any age, in certain outdoor public spaces. These outdoor public spaces include parks, beaches, outdoor sports facilities and public gardens. Please remember HANDS, FACE, SPACE when out.

Informal childcare can also be provided via childcare bubbles. Children can also spend time with another parents as part of a joint custody arrangement.

Further information about measures can be found at www.sefton.gov.uk/covid19

 

Can children and young people take part in Halloween activities?

October half term is usually a time for family activities and to enjoy the Autumn period.

Sadly, this year, in Sefton and other parts of Merseyside we are asking people not to take part in traditional trick or treating. ‘Trick or Treating’ can increase infection risk by increasing social mixing between different households. Furthermore, Halloween parties with children and adults from different household are not permitted. We know that it is a difficult time for children and young people, especially as they will not be able to take part in some usual Halloween night activities. Further guidance, and advice on suggested alternatives, will be available over the coming days.

What are the rules around childcare?

Registered childcare providers, including nannies, people in your support bubble and people in your childcare bubble can provide childcare support in private homes and gardens.

A childcare bubble is where someone in one household provides informal (unpaid and unregistered) childcare to a child aged 13 or under in another household. This must always be between the same 2 households. Friends or family who do not live with you and are not part of a support or childcare bubble must not visit your home to help with childcare.

Childcare bubbles are to be used to provide childcare only, and not for the purposes of different households mixing where they are otherwise not allowed to do so.

 

I was previously shielding/was identified as extremely clinically vulnerable, what do the measures mean for me?

The Liverpool City Region, including Sefton, have had local restrictions imposed but Shielding has NOT been reintroduced across the region.

It is however advised that clinically extremely vulnerable people do take special care for example by avoiding busy areas to minimise the chance of coming into close contact with others, staying at home as much as possible and where possible working from home. Where there is no alternative, people can still go to work but their employer is required to take steps to ensure your workplace is COVID-secure.

If you have any concerns or queries regarding medical needs, please check with your GP or Consultant.

 

My child or the child I care for was previously identified as extremely clinically vulnerable, what does this mean for them?

All pupils and students should continue to attend education settings within Sefton under the new regulations, unless they are one of the very small number of pupils or students under pediatric or other specialist care and have been advised by their GP or clinician not to attend an education setting.

Is there any support for my child’s health and wellbeing?

It is important that we take care of the health and wellbeing of children and young people across Sefton during these challenging times. That means that we as parents  and carers must look after our own mental health. If you would like some advice or information on help available visit www.sefton.gov.uk/miscellaneous-pages/health-andwellbeing-for-children-and-young-people-during-covid19.aspx

Finally, I would like to address a worrying rise in the spread of misinformation about COVID-19. Suggestions that the pandemic is a hoax, or caused by 5G, and the refusal of some to wear a mask or comply with the new guidance serves only to cause confusion and puts lives at risk.

COVID-19 and its effects on people’s lives and livelihoods is very real. While I completely understand the frustration that many people feel at further restrictions, I plead with every resident in Sefton to protect one another by following them.

If you have any questions about the virus, or the restrictions please do visit our website where you will lots of information and advice at www.sefton.gov.uk/covid19

Many thanks for your support in helping us through these difficult circumstances.

Yours Sincerely
MARGARET JONES
Director of Public Health
Sefton Council

Public consultation on possible improvements at Southport Golf Links now underway

Sefton Council’s Green Sefton team has launched a public consultation on ways to improve the course and facilities at Southport Golf Links.

As well as the tees, greens and fairways, people taking part are asked to rate current facilities including the reception and shop, changing rooms and toilets and parking and signage.

Participants are asked to indicate and prioritise on possible future improvements they would like to see at Southport Golf Links, including a new driving range, a chipping and bunker area, a putting green and floodlights. They can also comment on improvements they would like to see to the current facilities, including the White House Café.

Work to improve the course by redesigning is also among proposals on which people can express their views. And, as part of Sefton Council’s commitment to combating climate change, the consultation also includes questions about renewable energy, sustainable irrigation, recycling and reducing the use of plastics and improving existing wildlife habitat on the course.

Cllr Ian Moncur, Sefton Council’s Cabinet Member for Health and Wellbeing, said: “The results of this anonymous survey will help our Green Sefton service plan any possible future developments at Southport Golf Links and we want to hear from current users but also golfers who might consider using an improved course.

“Although no specific funding has yet been identified for investment at Southport Golf Links, as a result of feedback from last year’s similar consultation on Bootle Golf course, plans are now underway to create the new driving range that people told us they wanted to see as part of improved practice facilities at the course.”

Take part in the consultation.

The consultation opened last week and closes on Friday 20th November.

Southport Golf Links was originally opened in 1912 as a 9-hole course on reclaimed land bordering the Irish Sea. During the 1930s more land was reclaimed and it was extended to 18 holes. The course’s designer was Harry Shapland Colt who, in his time, was one of the world’s leading golf course architects.

Autumn edition of Aiming High for Disabled Children newsletter out now

The Autumn 2020 edition of Sefton Council’s Aiming High for Disabled Children newsletter is out now and available for you to read.

Aiming High for Disabled Children is a service provided by Sefton Council to make sure disabled children, young people and their families have the same access to fun, fulfilling activities and life chances as those without disabilities.

It provides specially tailored sessions during term-time and holidays that young people can access, and specialist support when young people reach key transition points, such as moving from education in to employment.

Aiming High’s newsletter is produced three times a year and contains good news stories about things that are happening within the service. This includes blogs from young people and service users, a closer look in to some of the activities, groups and events available for young people in Sefton and up-to-date information about local and national guidance and support for children and young people with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND).

You can read the Aiming High Newsletter by clicking here. This autumn 2020 edition focuses on the positive outreach work our Aiming High team and partner agencies have undertaken throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, and there’s also plenty of inspirational stories of achievement and success from young people across the borough.

Find out more about Aiming High for Disabled Children at Sefton Council’s website here. Use the links on this page to discover Aiming High’s Short Breaks activities, family support for SEND, and transitions services for young people age 13-25 SEND.

You can also register with Sefton’s Disabled Children’s Database at The Sefton Directory to keep up-to-date with services that are useful to you. Once registered you are also guaranteed a regular copy of the Aiming High for Disabled Children newsletter.

New refuse and recycling collections for Sefton

Changes to Sefton’s refuse and recycling service mean residents at thousands of homes across the borough will receive new brown and grey wheeled bins.

The bins replace sacks previously delivered to residents and will be collected on alternate weeks, with brown recycling bins collected one week and grey residual bins collected the next.

Around 4,000 households in Linacre, Derby, Litherland, Ford, Church, Blundellsands, Netherton and Orrell & Victoria are receiving bins as part of the new scheme.

The aim of the initiative is to create cleaner neighbourhoods across Sefton, reduce the risk of vermin and fly-tipping and introduce a safer, more hygienic system of storing household waste prior to collection.

Collections of wheeled bins begin the week commencing Monday October 26 and a calendar of collection dates will be delivered to those homes receiving the new bins, along with instructions on how to use the new service.

Households with a garden will also receive a green garden waste bin. Details of collection dates for garden waste will be on a sticker attached to the green bin lids.

Head of Highways and Public Protection for Sefton Council, Peter Moore, said: “We are pleased to be rolling out this successful collection system, already enjoyed by most Sefton residents, to these properties.

“This will result in immediate benefits to the local environment and has been welcomed by the majority of households for whom this new system represents a significant improvement on current collections.

“Introducing the new bins will mean people will no longer need to leave refuse bags out for collection, which will also help reduce the problem of fly-tipping in those areas.

“We will still provide assistance with wheeled bin collections to anyone who received help with refuse sack collections, and anyone who cannot put bins on the kerb edge for collection due to infirmity or disability can also apply for extra support.

“And, we will be ready to step in to help any of the households benefiting from this new service if they experience any issues as we roll out these improvements.”

“There is lots of helpful information on the Sefton Council website at www.sefton.gov.uk/bins-recycling which explains the process and provides a calendar of collection dates.”

People can find all the information regarding wheeled bins collections on Sefton Council’s website at: www.sefton.gov.uk/bins-recycling

Important information about the new collection service

  • Bins should be presented on the kerb edge outside properties by 6.30am on the morning of collection, and once emptied your bins must be put back within your property boundary.
  • Lids of bins must be fully closed when out for collection.
  • Residents must not put any extra bags of general waste or recycling at the kerbside next to the bins, these will NOT be collected.
  • All recycling can go together in the brown bin. Recycling should be left loose in the bin with no carrier bags inside.
  • Green garden waste bins can be emptied up until 8pm on collection days. Details of what can go in garden waste bins and collection dates will be displayed on bin stickers.

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