Local Response to Covid-19
Community Action MK are working with partners and the community to ensure residents across Milton Keynes are supported throughout this challenging and scary time.
They are working to provide strategic help to groups and coordinate a volunteer response to arising challenges as a result of Covid-19.
Resources and Support for Groups during Covid-19
Information here on:
Community Action : MK Toolkit
- Resources for Voluntary Organisations and Community Groups
- Volunteering Safety Checklist
- PRIORITY Risk Assessment
- Covid 19 – FAQ’s for Groups
- Funding and Grants – FAQ’s
- Governance for Groups
Information for Communities
Info here on:
- Businesses and employers
- Checking information
- Covid-19 information translated
- Financial Support and Guidance
- Hospitals and pharmacies
- How you can help – Volunteering
- How you can help – MK Appeals
- Local support and guidance
- Mental health resources
- Parents, carers and children
- Self-isolation support and activities
- Staying home
- Vulnerable people:
- Domestic Abuse
- Gypsy and Traveller communities
- Youth Services
Formal Signposting Channels
For formal groups and organisations that individuals that are in need can be directed to right now, click here. Areas covered include:
- Disability and Carers
- Domestic and Sexual Abuse
- Financial Support
- Food Provision and Delivery
- Isolation and Loneliness
- Medication Delivery
- Mental Health
- Physical Health
- Young People
Local responses to Covid-19: What is happening in your area?
Find out here what is happening in your area during the Covid-19 pandemic and what you can do to support your community.
The MK Good Neighbour Guide
Ways to help your community amidst the COVID-19 pandemic, created by MK Community Foundation and MK Council.
Local and UK wide sources of funding and resources for your group/organisation that have been made available as the result of the Covid – 19 crisis can be found here.
MK Community Foundation Emergency Response Appeal
Funding is available for all those amazing community groups, charities and not-for-profit organisations supporting those in MK most disadvantaged by the Covid-19 outbreak.
To find out more and check eligibility click here
MK Recovery Fund
July 2020 – During the emergency phase of their Covid-19 grant programme, MK Community Foundation has supported local community groups with a total of 102 grants to the value of almost £500,000 for a range of local Covid-19 emergency response projects. The emergency appeal is moving into the next phase and grants will now be available through the Recovery Fund. More details here.
Healthwatch Milton Keynes are talking regularly with MK Clinical Commissioning Group, MK Hospital, MK Council and Public Health to ensure that they have the most up to date information about COVID-19 and the impact on local services in Milton Keynes. They are working hard to update their web pages as quickly as possible, so that you have the information you need. Click here for information on:
- Support during COVID-19
- Ways to help your community during the COVID-19 outbreak
- Changes to services
“Many organisations and community groups in Milton Keynes are working hard to make sure that residents have the support they need during this challenging time.”
Click here to find information on these groups, which include:
- Domestic Abuse
- Supporting your recovery after COVID-19
- Local Bereavement Support Information
- Support in the Community:
Coping with separation, isolation and loss
Age UK Milton Keynes
Food Bank Xtra
The British Red Cross
New Cancer Centre Help Line
Dementia Information Service
- Looking after your mental wellbeing
- Supporting Children and Young People
Covid-19 in Milton Keynes
Click here for information including:
- Help and Support – What to do if you’re worried about your financial situation or need emergency food or medication
- Covid-19 Recovery Framework – Outlining how Milton Keynes and its people can successfully recover from the impact of COVID-19
- How you can Help – How to help others, be a good neighbour, or donate to support people in crisis during COVID-19
MK Food Bank have teamed up with MK Council to launch Food Bank Extra, a new city-wide food service to ensure it has the right resources to cope with the additional demand during the Coronavirus outbreak. Just like the usual Food Bank support, Food Bank Xtra is specifically for people who receive benefits, free school meals for their children, who are in severe debt or crisis, are unemployed, homeless, or at risk of homelessness and other similar vulnerable situations.
If you need help, please call the Food Bank Helpline on 0300 303 4933 or text HELP 07874 964505 to discuss your circumstances. You will need to bring ID to the Collection Centre for every family member. If someone is collecting on your behalf, they will need to bring your ID. You will also be required to provide evidence of eligibility.
More info here
MK Storehouse provide donated clothing for adults and for children of school age upwards free of charge to families and individuals who are struggling financially and have been referred to them.
How Do I Refer?
If you are a local authority, charity, faith organisation or if you are a professional working in care, health or education, you can refer to MK Storehouse individuals or families in need who you have come into contact with. If you wish to refer anyone then please contact MK Storehouse and they will discuss this with you and supply the necessary information and Referral Form.
How Do Get I Referred?
If you wish to be referred to the MK Storehouse for clothing then this can be done by speaking with any of the following;
- A professional working in a local authority
- A manager from a registered Charity
- Faith organisation managers or staff
- Your GP/Doctor
- Professionals working in care, health or education
Further details can be found here
MK Money Lifeline, an established debt advice service in MK, has set up a service called MK Signpost. This is a telephone helpline, designed so that people can speak to a friendly voice about how Covid-19 has affected them. The caller will be signposted to an agency that offers specific support or be referred to MK Money Lifeline, the debt advice service. This service has been set up because many people will be struggling and not know where to turn to.
If anyone would be interested in becoming a signpost call operator, they would also love to hear from you. Call 0300 123 5198.
Do you need financial support?
If you’re worried about your finances and how you are going to make ends meet, there is help available. Some frequently asked questions and links to financial support can be found on the MK Council website.
Tackling violence against women and girls in Milton Keynes
Violence against women remains a major global public health and women’s health threat during emergencies. The risks of violence that women and their children their face during the current Covid-19 crisis cannot be ignored. Click here for information from Community Action: MK including:
- How COVID-19 can exacerbate risks of violence for women
- The impact of Covid-19 on families experiencing domestic abuse in MK
- Things to look out for that may indicate domestic abuse
- Organisations that can help if you, or someone you know, have been affected by domestic abuse or violence, including MK Act
Mental Health Apps and Resources
A resources and apps information sheet has been compiled by BLMK Clinical Commissioning Groups to bring together resources and phone apps that may be useful to maintain mental wellbeing during the Covid-19 crisis and beyond. These resources are free to use unless otherwise stated. You can find it here
Milton Keynes’ Talking Therapies Service is urging people to talk about their feelings rather than bottling them. Referral rates to the team have fallen during the pandemic by 60 to 70 per cent, though it continues to offer support remotely via the phone, video call or webinar. Its concern is that people in MK may be storing up problems that will only be exacerbated if they don’t contact the service.
The Talking Therapies service can help if you’re feeling down or depressed because of isolation or anxious and worried because of the coronavirus. It’s offering some enhanced treatments during the outbreak including coronavirus specific webinars and guided self-help. All appointments are taking place either on the phone or by video link. People who are struggling can refer themselves to the service here.
There is also a dedicated support line for frontline health and social care workers in Milton Keynes, which is manned by trained counsellors and therapists between 9am and 5pm Monday to Friday. If you are a frontline health and social care worker and need to speak to someone then call 01908 724240.
Mind BLMK’s aim is to ensure that no one has to face a mental health challenge alone. Working closely with a variety of partners, they offer a number of activities from their wellbeing centres and local venues, to make a difference to the mental health and wellbeing of adults in Bedfordshire, Luton and Milton Keynes. Their services range from counselling and resilience building, to mentoring, crisis support, workplace support and recovery support.
During this time, Mind BLMK have seen individuals making contact due to multiple mental health and well-being needs including, an increase in anxiety, depression, Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, stress, Hoarding Disorder, and loneliness linked to isolation.
Emotional wellbeing support
They are offering emotional wellbeing support over the phone to the wider community. If you feel that you or anyone you know would benefit from having someone to talk to, either as a one-off or regularly over the coming weeks, please get in touch or pass our their details on.
Milton Keynes – Victoria Sharp
Phone: 01525 722 225
Phone: 01525 722 225 / 0738 787 2451
If you or someone you know needs urgent or crisis support with their mental health, they are there for you. Our Crisis Café will be operating remotely seven days a week, between 5pm – 11pm and can be contacted during these times by phone on 01525 722 225.
Could Social Prescribing work for you?
Age UK Milton Keynes is a local independent charity that is working with the 27 GP practices in Milton Keynes to provide vital support to people who might be feeling lonely or anxious. The charity’s Live Life MK is a Social Prescribing Service which helps people find a non-medical solution to worries and problems that are affecting their health.
Live Life MK has carried on supporting clients throughout the coronavirus pandemic, mainly by telephone. The service is adapting to suit individual situations whilst ensuring that government guidelines are always followed
You can contact Live Life MK directly, for yourself or on behalf of someone else if you have their permission, by calling 01908 973720 or text 07849 083 222.
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Would you be interested in volunteering? Read this report from Penny Keens
A report on the recent Coat of Hopes events in MK, part of the Camino to COP pilgrimage
As we continue working to get Welcome MK up and running [see more about Welcome MK here], we have two voluntary administrative roles we’re hoping can be filled from people across our MK churches.