Voluntary Action South West Surrey

A member of the Ash & Tongham, Godalming, Cranleigh, Haslemere, Farnham, Guildford, Surrey Business and Surrey communities

About Voluntary Action South West Surrey

We are a local support and development group helping local voluntary and community groups develop and thrive.

We provide funding advice, we recruit volunteers, we run training and events and have projects to promote community involvement and encourage volunteering.

If you are a local community group needing more volunteers, some help with finding funding or with any other aspect of running you group please get in touch, our email is info@vasws.org.uk

Find us online

Visit our website at https://voluntaryactionsws.org.uk/

Join one or more of our mailing lists:

Join this mailing list to be kept up to date on the Older People's Network for South West Surrey

Cancel Join now

Guildford & Waverley Mental Health Forum

Cancel Join now

Voluntary Action South West Surrey Mailing list

Cancel Join now

VASWS Annual Conference

I consent to receiving an email newsletter from Voluntary Action South West Surrey containing updates about activities and events

Cancel Join now

Latest posts

A Look Back At Welcome Buddies Over The Past 5 Months

Welcome Buddies is run by Voluntary Action South West Surrey and is part of the Welcome Project. It aims to help people with mental ill-health move on with their lives through recruiting volunteers to support people to join in with activities in their communities.

The project is run by Denise Graves and David Rose and they have been looking back over the last five months at the positive changes to the project following the lockdown and isolation period.

Initially people wishing to have a volunteer buddy and work on their own personal action plans would meet weekly for a couple of hours with their buddy. Then the lockdown was put in place and it was no longer possible for the clients and buddies to meet face-face.

Instead meetings quickly moved to virtual video calls and regular telephone calls that people enjoyed. Groups would then meet via video call and some pop-up virtual coffee meetings were started.

As the months progressed and the lockdown eased, Denise and David started organising walks with very small groups. This has been a fantastic way for everyone in the project to get to know each other better. Walks have taken place in Guildford, Cranleigh and Bramley and they will continue to organise these weekly as they are proving popular!

Other activities that have been introduced include gardening. For Earth’s Sake, a shop in Cranleigh owned by Vanessa Ford, are offering the team the opportunity to use a bit of their land for growing vegetables and Denise and David are currently working to set this opportunity up, that will hopefully be established by autumn. This will be a good opportunity for clients who simply wish to spend time in a relaxed outdoor setting with a few others.

The team need garden tools for this venture and would be grateful for any help. If you or anyone you know wishes to donate tools please contact Denise on 07825417204 or email d.graves@vasws.org.uk

Finally,this summer two clients of the project have become peer mentors and as Welcome Buddies progresses, they feel more of a complete team!

Groups meeting via video calls and telephone calls are now a regular part of the project. The Buddies are also about to receive some virtual training from Surrey Live about the importance of physical exercise and mental health.

Volunteers are still needed, particularly volunteers to help accompany people outdoors for walks after a long period of shielding. For more information about the project or to sign up, please ring Denise via 07825417204 or email d.graves@vasws.org.uk or contact David, d.rose@vasws.org.uk 07825419408.

Tech How To Guides

Surrey Coalition of Disabled People has developed Tech How To guides along with app reviews that can be downloaded from their website.

The guides include help on joining a video conference (this is also available as an easy read version) help for android and Apple users, and guides to help you with smart home devices, as well as app reviews.

For more information and to download the guides, here is the link to the website - https://surreycoalition.org.uk/tech-how-to-guides/#apps

Online Young Adults Group

The Surrey Coalition of Disabled People are launching a Young Adults Group on 30th July at 7pm, encouraging young adults who are living with a disability to get together with other young adults who are disabled and their carers to meet online for some light-hearted, peer-support, fun and activities. The team would also like the young adults to help them decide what other activities they could run.

For further information please see the flyer and contact Yasmin Broome to get the joining information - yasmin.broome@surreycoalition.org.uk or text/phone 0745 5267424.

We Are OPEN!

The volunteer centre in Guildford is now open to the public for drop-ins. The centre is open on Mondays and Thursdays, 10.30am-12.30pm for anyone to drop in and talk to a volunteer if they have enquiries about volunteering, social activities or services that could support wellbeing. All meetings are restricted to a maximum of 15 minutes only.

Social distancing and hygiene guidelines must be adhered to in the building and masks are mandatory.

Everyone is welcome to pop in to see our helpful volunteers to find out more about how you or your clients can get involved in the community.

We're based at 39 Castle Street (opposite the entrance to the Castle grounds and the Kings Head pub). If you would like to call us please ring 01483 565456, or email: communitypoint@vasws.org.uk

We hope to see you soon.

Citizens Advice Waverley New Video Advice Service Live In All Waverley Offices From 27th July

Following the success of the pilot Video Advice Service in the Farnham office, Citizens Advice Waverley will be extending this service to all Waverley offices from Monday 27th July.

Please see the below details, opening times and information for those wishing to access the service in any of the Waverley offices:

Farnham

50 South St, Farnham GU9 7RN

Monday - Thursday, 10am-1.30pm

Cranleigh

Village Way, Cranleigh GU6 8AF

Monday - Thursday,10am-1pm

Haslemere

Well Lane, Haslemere GU27 2LB

Monday, 10am-1pm

Tuesday, 1pm-5pm

Wednesday - Thursday, 10am-2pm

Godalming

Baptist Church 5 Queen St, Godalming GU71BA

Monday - Friday, 10am-2pm.

The team will continue to provide advice for those with access to phone or email in the normal way:

  • Telephone: Call Advice line 0344 848 7969 to speak to an adviser
The Video Advice Service is for local people who do not have access to telephone or email or whose information and advice needs cannot be met by the current service and who can safely come to the office (with someone to support them if necessary). It is possible that appointments may be available immediately.

Alternatively, support agencies or carers in Waverley can assist by alerting the team of potential clients who cannot easily contact Citizens Advice via the following email address: admin@waverleycab.cabnet.org.uk

Access to the office can be gained by using the door intercom system. Unfortunately, anyone exhibiting Covid-19 symptoms will not be permitted to enter the office.

Infection control measures and equipment will be in place in the office including hand sanitiser at the entrance (which visitors will be required to use). All visitors will be directed to an interview room where they will access the advice they need via a video link to an adviser. They will be given clear instructions at all times.

The South West Surrey Domestic Abuse Outreach Service will continue to provide a telephone and email based service, (01483 898884, or email swr@swsda.org.uk )

If you would like to discuss anything further about the Video Advice Service, please contact the team via: admin@waverleycab.cabnet.org.uk

Surrey County Council Publishes Plan Of Action To Tackle Spread Of Covid-19 Locally

Surrey County Council has published its Local Outbreak Control Plan, outlining its readiness to control the spread of Covid-19 and quickly manage any local spike in infections. Details can be found here - https://www.surreycc.gov.uk/__data/assets/pdf_file/0005/229370/20200630-Surrey-Local-Outbreak-Control-Plan-Test-Trace-v1.0.pdf

Surrey is one of 11 ‘good practice’ areas across England chosen to work together to innovate and share best practice in the development of Local Outbreak Control Plans.

The plan is a result of weeks of intense planning from many health and social care partners in Surrey including: the NHS, Surrey County Council, district and borough councils and military planners.

It is hoped that any ‘localised lockdown’ in Surrey can be avoided if people continue to follow important public health messages and comply with the NHS Test and Trace system. The plan details local communications and engagement activities, including targeted digital engagement tactics to ensure messaging can be targeted at residents within a few hours of a notification of a local outbreak.

Further coronavirus advice and support is available from Surrey County Council- https://www.surreycc.gov.uk/people-and-community/emergency-planning-and-community-safety/coronavirus

Farnham Community Store

Hale Community Centre is now hosting the Farnham Community Store that is led by the Farnham Maltings.

People in the community can donate or borrow items free of charge from the store such as jigsaws, games, musical instruments and a plethora of other things!

For more information please see the flyer.

Citizens Advice Waverley Is Opening!

Please see the below message from Phil Davies, Chief Executive of Citizens Advice Waverley:

"During the Coronavirus crisis Citizens Advice Waverley advisors have been working safely from home to continue to provide advice to the community via telephone and email. This service will continue.

Telephone: Call Advice line 0344 848 7969 to speak to an adviser.

Email: Please complete the enquiry form at www.waverleycab.org.uk

We recognise that there are a number of people in Waverley who do not have access to telephone or email or whose information and advice needs cannot be met through these channels. Therefore,we have decided to expand our reach to ensure that we meet the requirements of this group.

We are pleased to announce that we are piloting a new Covid safe Video Advice Service, initially at our Farnham office from Monday 6th July.

This service is for local people in this group who can safely come to the office (with someone to support them if necessary).

They can drop into the Farnham office Monday to Thursday between 10am and 1.30pm. It is possible that appointments may be available immediately. Alternatively, support agencies or carers in Waverley can assist by alerting us of potential clients who cannot easily contact us via the following email address: admin@waverleycab.cabnet.org.uk

Access to the office can be gained by using the door intercom system.

Unfortunately, anyone who is exhibiting Covid-19 symptoms will not be permitted to enter the office.

Infection control measures and equipment will be in place in the office including hand sanitiser at the entrance (which visitors will be required to use). All visitors will be directed to an interview room where they will access the advice they need via a video link to an adviser. They will be given clear instructions at all times.

Our other offices (Cranleigh, Haslemere,Godalming) will provide a limited Video Advice Service in the weeks following successful completion of the pilot. Further announcements will follow.

The South West Surrey Domestic Abuse Outreach Service will continue to provide a telephone and email based service, (01483 898884, or email swr@swsda.org.uk ).

Could I please ask you to spread the word to your contacts and clients so that as many people as possible are aware of our new Video Advice Service.

We are all adjusting to the new normal and as we move out of lockdown, we are working to increase the level of support to everyone in the community.

If you would like to discuss anything further about our Video Advice Service, please do not hesitate to get in touch at: admin@waverleycab.cabnet.org.uk "

Free Community Counselling

I'm All Ears is a voluntary organisation providing a free listening service and counselling to the community of all ages.

Before Covid-19, the organisation provided a drop-in service at the Hasleway Centre in Haslemere, however, the restrictions meant this was no longer possible and the service is now being delivered in a virtual capacity via Zoom, telephone and Whatsapp.

I'm All Ears offers a non-judgemental service, providing a safe and confidential means for people to offload or engage in counselling.

For more information and contact details please see the flyer.

Service Update From Age UK Surrey

Here are two more services that Age UK Surrey has set-up to help people get through the pandemic:

Age UK Surrey Call of Friendship and Support for Veterans:

The project has been set up in recognition that veterans, like many older people, are feeling more isolated than ever before. The project wraps their current emergency services and tailors them for veterans (Information and Advice, Emergency Shopping, Check in and Chat and Digital Help Telephone Support). They are also offering veterans, who receive a Check-in and Chat call, the opportunity of joining other veterans in a regular virtual coffee morning.

Please signpost or refer veterans, including people who served in National Service, who would benefit from the Call of Friendship and Support project to Age UK Surrey. The Call of Friendship project will run until mid-November 2020 and has been made possible by the support of the Armed Forces Covenant Trust.

Contact Age UK Surrey on telephone 01483 503414 or email enquiries@ageuksurrey.org.uk

Surrey Virtual Hub – Age UK Surrey Information and Advice sessions:

The Surrey Virtual Wellbeing Hub is a digital platform designed to connect Surrey residents to online resources and support available across Surrey. The Hub has been made possible through a joint partnership between Surrey Heartlands Health and Care Partnership, Surrey County Council, Surrey and Borders Partnership and other voluntary sector partners. It is a one-stop-shop for connecting people to online wellbeing support either through self-referral or referral from a third party. Age UK Surrey are offering free virtual Information and Advice sessions every Thursday at 2pm. Everyone over 50 years old and carers are welcome.

For more information please visit: https://virtualwellbeing.healthysurrey.org.uk/or to book directly email: enquiries@ageuksurrey.org.uk