If you are an unpaid carer, Carers Northumberland’s information and advice team is available from 9 am to 5 pm, Monday to Friday, to help you find your way around the social care system, tell you about your legal rights, and signpost you to organisations and services that can support you in your caring role. Carers Northumberland also administers the Carer Support Fund, which provides small grants to enable unpaid carers to take short breaks from their caring responsibilities. You can email Carers Northumberland or call 01670 320 025, or attend the free event that’s taking place on Thursday 24 November in Alnwick where you can talk to Carers Northumberland and a range of other organisations. If you know an unpaid carer who might find this information useful, please pass it on.
Northumberland Libraries’ staff can provide basic help with IT queries, free of charge. Help might include, but is not limited to, getting online (connecting to existing WiFi at home), using the internet, setting up a free email account, accessing free digital books to read or listen to, supporting access to all digital NHS services, setting up Zoom, Skype and other video chats, online shopping, and troubleshooting other basic problems. All help is free of charge, private, and given by library staff. Call 0345 600 6400 (Monday to Thursday 08.30 to 17.00 and Friday 08.30 to 16.30) to arrange a call-back appointment. You will be called back by a staff member on either a Tuesday or a Thursday between 10.00 and 19.00. While some IT problems may be too tricky to fix over the phone, you are invited to get in touch if you are struggling, and staff will try to help. If you know someone in the parish who might find this kind of help useful, please let them know about this service.
Citizens Advice Northumberland has asked us to spread the word about the services it offers. It gives free, confidential, impartial and independent advice and information on a wide range of subjects, including debt, energy, benefits and consumer advice, and can support families after a cancer diagnosis through its Macmillan Benefits Advice team. For more information, visit Citizens Advice Northumberland or call 0808 278 7944 (Monday to Friday, 9.00 am to 4.30 pm).