COUNSELLING HUB IS UNDER PRESSURE

Owner and co-founder of the phenomenally busy Lincoln-based Naomi Watkins Counselling Hub today pledged that her team would continue supporting hundreds of clients during the Coronavirus epidemic.

Owner Naomi Watkins-Ligudzinska said the Community Interest Company, whose team members are using their individual expertise to help around 100 people a week – who are suffering from anxiety, trauma, depression and complex mental health needs – are determined that people will not be left ‘high and dry.’

But she explained that the team is facing challenges because (unless the Chancellor intervenes) the CIC could find itself short of funds to carry on its work depending on how long the current crisis lasts.

“We are open and ready to support clients and businesses right now but we are transitioning to the use of telephone and Online options to maintain the level of service we provide. We feel this is vitally important.

“Every client – from children with their parents to elderly individuals – is assessed when they are referred to us and given a bespoke programme of support. That gives them some idea of how many sessions they might need to help them start getting their lives back on track.

“Obviously, in the current climate, we are concerned about everyone’s mental health, but we don’t want all the good work we have been doing with our current clients to be undone, when many of them are doing so well. This is why we are relying on telephone and online contact.

“Funding-wise we have had some wonderful grants over the past three years for specific aspects of our work. That support has helped us to counsel many more people in need from all walks of life.

“However, in a general sense, and thinking about the weeks ahead, we hope to see some Government intervention to help us in these unprecedented circumstances because the local Clinical Care Commissioning Group currently has no statutory obligation to finance us.

“Without this sort of support, we may have to reduce our help for clients due to potential financial pressures and that is the last thing we want.”

Naomi’s advice for everyone trying to manage their mental health under the Coronavirus, is prioritise your self-care, avoid excessive consumption of the media, focus on things you can control like staying home and handwashing, keep in touch with family and friends via telephone and online services. Eat well, stay hydrated, have a walk once a day, keep busy with things you enjoy doing.

For further information, please contact Naomi Watkins-Ligudzinska on 07772 532185

Covid 19 & Domestic Abuse

Important Announcement – Public Health

Dear all NWCH clients (all current clients will also be emailed separately with this information).

As part of our duty of care as a mental health provider we would like to take this opportunity to reassure you that we are closely watching the developing matters relating to COVID-19 (Coronavirus), taking keen note of information disseminated by Public Health England, the Department of Health, and our local Government. We would like to take a proactive rather than reactive approach to the situation. We are continually reflecting about ways in which to keep our clients and staff safe.

Here is the link to the World Health Organisation (WHO) page about the virus https://buff.ly/2uA6LBt which gives information on how to protect yourselves.

Following last week’s press conference from the UK Government and yesterday’s advice, where it was announced that the UK is entering the Delay Phase, and taking into account the changing nature of the situation, we would like to let you know that the NWCH Hub remains open at this time unless national advice changes, however here are some points to be aware of:

1. Skype / telephone appointments are available:
If you would rather not attend the Hub for a session that you have booked in, as always, Skype or telephone consultations are available. If you would like to take this approach please let us know as soon as possible in advance of your session so that we can make sure you and us are fully equipped for this session. This option is also naturally available for those that choose / need to self-isolate. The fees for sessions remain the same, those of you that have funded sessions will not pay for your sessions as normal.

2. Your health:
In line with the advice stated by the National Press Conference last week, if you have a new and constant dry cough, or if you have a raised temperature (higher than 37.8c) you will need to stay at home and rest for 7-14 days. In addition to this, if you feel that you have developed symptoms, please call ‪111‬ or visit https://t.co/hztqvxsWb0

3. Our health:
Should any of our staff develop any symptoms or become aware that they have been in contact with anyone asked to self-isolate, or if they are diagnosed, they will immediately postpone their sessions. We will make those booked in aware of the situation and will not re-start sessions with that counsellor until they have been given the all clear by primary health care professionals / have been clear of symptoms for 7-14 days. You will be provided with contact details for other organisations and/or offered telephone/skype sessions.

4. Online advice:
Please only take advice from trusted sources such as NHS England, found here: https://t.co/vZvkU18g1i

Whilst many of the people who have the virus will only experience mild to moderate symptoms, we feel we have a duty of care to especially protect those with complex / serious ill-health issues, pregnant people and older people over the age of 70 years of age, and by taking extra care, we reduce the risk of passing the virus onto those people and those closest to us.

These are very unusual circumstances, but we feel it is best to be prepared and aware. We will continue to monitor the situation and update you accordingly with any further changes. Please do feel free to ask any questions you may have with your counsellor at your appointment or please also feel free to call or email us.

Thank you for your continued support and we wish you all the best of health in these uncertain times.