• Asda have been in touch to let me know that since the 1st November, and until the end of December, they are offering emergency responders the chance to get a free tea or coffee in many of their stores. This offer is available all day, every day, in all stores with cafes or self-serve hot drinks machines and also includes Asda Express and Asda on The Move stores. It’s their way of saying ‘thank you’ to our hardworking emergency responders for their unwavering commitment to keeping our community safe!
• English Heritage have been in touch in respect of a new learning appeal to help provide educational opportunities for young people. English Heritage are the UK’s largest provider of free school visits; in 2022/23, they hosted around 180,000 educational visits to sites in their care. They’re also developing a unique new ‘STEM in Heritage’ programme to inspire students in exploring scientific and technological disciplines, and have also reached over 2,000 young people by connecting them with heritage in creative ways. However, the costs of providing these opportunities have risen, and so they’ve launched an appeal to help ensure they can continue to provide heritage education to as many young people as possible. We’re immensely lucky to have English Heritage sites in Corby & East Northamptonshire, and I know just how important it is to connect young people to our history, bringing it to life, both locally and beyond. This is a hugely worthwhile cause, and I’d certainly encourage you to support them if you can! You can find out more, including how to support the appeal, here.
• Young HealthWatch Northamptonshire are looking for volunteers to help make a positive impact on health and social care in Northamptonshire. Their programme involves visiting hospitals and other healthcare settings, although the work they do will be decided by volunteers. Previous work from Young Healthwatch Northamptonshire has included investigating young people’s mental health, PSHE lessons, and the impact of COVID-19 on young people, and volunteers have also presented at local and national events. This is a fantastic opportunity for young people to gain new skills and meet likeminded others, so do please consider applying! You can get involved, here.
• As part of the 'NHS Elective Recovery Plan', patients who have waited over 40 weeks for a hospital appointment without a confirmed date will be allowed to switch hospitals to be seen more quickly, where clinically appropriate. It’s estimated that around 400,000 people meet the criteria and will be contacted directly by their hospital to arrange this. We’ve already made significant progress in tackling the elective backlog, with the NHS virtually eliminating two year waits and cutting 18 month waits by over 91% since September 2021. This latest announcement builds on these successes and will make a real difference to people in our area and beyond.
• The NHS winter vaccine programme is now underway, and eligible groups, including housebound individuals and residents of older adult care homes, can now receive COVID-19 and flu vaccinations. With the winter period fast approaching, and in light of a new COVID-19 variant emerging, it’s especially important to make sure we’re all up-to-date with our vaccinations, and so if you are part of a vulnerable group, then please do make sure you’re sufficiently protected. Children aged 2-17 are also eligible for flu vaccinations, and so I’d strongly encourage all parents to complete their school consent forms to enable their children to receive the shots. The #NHS winter vaccination programme is underway, offering flu and COVID-19 jabs to eligible groups. With winter on its way, and a new COVID-19 variant emerging, it’s even more important to ensure you’ve received the shots. You can book online, via the NHS App, or by calling 119.
• Applications are now open for the Community Automated External Defibrillators (AED) Fund, through which community organisations can apply for grants to fund defibrillators. With £1 million of Government funding, the fund will provide at least 1,000 defibrillators in community spaces across England, which will enable 24-hour access to these life-saving pieces of medical equipment. Using a defibrillator within three to five minutes of a cardiac arrest increases survival chances by 40%, so it’s hugely important that we have as many defibrillators as possible to provide emergency medical interventions. I’d strongly encourage community groups across Corby & East Northamptonshire to consider applying for funding, demonstrating that defibrillators will be placed in accessible areas where they’re most needed. You can find out more about the fund, and how to apply, here.
If you have anything you would like to be featured next week, please email all the details to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Also, if you have taken any photos of constituency landscapes or landmarks, which could be featured in my ‘Community Notices’ headers, please send them in and I will try to use as many of them as possible (and credit them accordingly!), as a celebration of the fantastic place we live and work in. I know we have many budding photographers in our community and it would be great to showcase their work!