0191 643 2626

North Tyneside

Launch of North Tyneside Winter Support Network 2018/19

VODA is once again coordinating North Tyneside’s Winter Support Network, a partnership of local voluntary and community sector organisations which are helping over 300 of the borough’s most vulnerable residents stay safe and healthy during the winter months.

Supported by North Tyneside Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG), the Network is providing a range of direct support, information and equipment to older people, isolated residents and others who need that bit of extra help during the colder months.

Along with Age UK North Tyneside, Family Gateway, Anxious Minds and Meadow Well Connected, VODA is distributing a number of Keep Warm Packs, which include a pair of thermal socks, thermal hat, hot water bottle, fleece blanket and insulated mug as well as information leaflets and advice. We have a limited number of surplus packs available to voluntary and community sector organisations, so if you are working with anyone in North Tyneside who could benefit from a pack, please get in touch with Keith Hardy at VODA for more information.

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Safe Places Scheme North Tyneside

Safe Spaces North Tyneside

Safe Places is a scheme for people who may be vulnerable as a result of their physical or mental health or because they have a learning disability.

People can become disorientated or distressed whilst out in the community and need a little support; they may experience dementia or may have been subject to some form of verbal or physical abuse whilst out in public.

A Safe Place is a building, like a shop, a bank, a community centre or a church, where staff will help members of the Safe Places scheme.

If you are a resident and want to become a member of the Safe Places scheme please click here.

As a member of the Safe Places scheme you receive a card and a key ring. You need to add your name to the card and the telephone numbers of two people you trust. Make sure that the people you have chosen know they may be contacted if you use the Safe Places scheme.

North Tyneside VODA is a Safe Place. Find us here.

To access a Safe Place:
Look for a place that displays the Safe Place window sticker
Go inside and ask for help; show the staff your card or keyring
Your Safe Place will contact someone you trust or the Police

For more information about the Safe Places scheme please click here.
To become a Safe Place please click here.

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New Year Volunteer Recruitment Fair: Saturday 26 January

Make a difference in 2019 – Volunteer!

If you want to do something special in 2019, why not consider making it your New Year’s resolution to volunteer?

There are a huge number of benefits to volunteering – it’s a fantastic way to meet new people, take on a new challenge, learn new skills and give something back to your local community. You can volunteer as often or as little as possible, and no matter what your age, skills, ability or experience, there will be a volunteering role to suit you.

In order to let people know about the wide range of volunteering opportunities available in North Tyneside, we are holding a New Year Volunteer Recruitment Fair on Saturday 26 January 2019, from 10am to 3pm at The Forum Shopping Centre in Wallsend.

There will be stalls and information from a range of voluntary and community organisations who all involve volunteers in their work, as well as members of VODA’s friendly staff team on hand to answer any queries you have and tell you about our own volunteering project.

There is no need to book – simply call in to the Forum between 10am and 3pm!

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Active North Tyneside Community Fund





Active North Tyneside aims to encourage everybody to be more physically active and its Community Fund exists to help local groups, organisations and registered charities get local communities moving.

Applications are invited for support of up to £500, which could be used for things like hiring a court or sports pitch, buying or hiring equipment, training, instructor costs or promotional items.

Priority will be given to applications which target people living in areas identified as being among the most deprived in the borough. For further information and to apply visit www.activenorthtyneside.org.uk or call 0191 643 7171.

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Current Trustee Vacancies in and around North Tyneside

Dyslexia North East – a Registered Charity and Company Limited by Guarantee which aims to support families with dyslexia, including adults and children, to enable them to achieve their full potential. Dyslexia North East seeks to promote knowledge, skills and understanding of dyslexia across the Community in Schools, Colleges and Businesses. Dyslexia North East is looking for trustees that can help to write funding bids and seek new donors; and who can help support parents and teachers with knowledge and resources about dyslexia, and train volunteers. Trustee meetings are held once a month at Royal Grammar Junior School, Jesmond, Newcastle NE2 4RX.

Healthwatch North Tyneside is the independent voice for users of health and social care services in North Tyneside. Healthwatch listens to people’s views and experiences, receives feedback about services and works with service providers and commissioners to better respond to people’s needs. Healthwatch is looking for new volunteers to join its board of trustees. As a trustee you will play a vital role in setting the direction of the organisation, overseeing its work and working with health and social care providers to improve services. Potential trustees should be able to offer at least 3 hours a month.

Meadow Well Connected, a community centre in North Tyneside, is looking for volunteers to join its board of trustees. Volunteers should have a range of business skills that can help the organisation progress its aims to deliver services to one of the most deprived communities of North Tyneside

Pathways 4 All is a registered charity which provides social and recreational activities for children with disabilities and additional needs within North Tyneside and the surrounding areas. It also offers a range of support services and social networks for children with disabilities or additional needs, and their families. The charity is looking for volunteers, preferably with financial and business skills and insight, to help the charity to deliver and increase its services.

Key Enterprises provides supported activities to adults with learning disabilities, mental health problems or acquired brain injuries. Individuals are able to develop practical skills within Key Enterprises’ working departments (Woodwork, Metalwork, Furniture Renovation, Bicycle Maintenance, Catering, Horticutlture) whilst building confidence and a sense of community. Service users can also take part in a rage of community based activities. Key Enterprises is looking for trustees who have an interest in this area of delivery and who can contribute business skills. Cedarwood Trust, another community hub on Meadow Well, which focuses on supporting pre-school children and their families, and on older socially isolated residents, is looking for trustees interested in Early Years work, as well as people with finance and HR skills. In addition to trustees, they are also looking for people with business skills that can contribute to their Finance, HR and Buildings working groups (daytime meetings).

Cedarwood Trust, a community hub on Meadow Well, which focuses on supporting pre-school children and their families, and on older socially isolated residents, is looking for trustees interested in Early Years work, as well as people with finance and HR skills. In addition to trustees, they are also looking for people with business skills that can contribute to their Finance, HR and Buildings working groups (daytime meetings).

North Tyneside Learning Trust appoints governors to schools in North Tyneside and is currently looking for enthusiastic and committed volunteers to appoint to the governing bodies of primary, secondary and special schools across the borough.

If you are interested in these, or any other trustee roles, please contact Ian Dodds at Sector Connector.

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Healthwatch North Tyneside: Prize-winning survey




The role of Healthwatch is to gather feedback from local people about the health and social care services they use.

Healthwatch North Tyneside has produced a short survey asking about people’s experiences of health and social care, what’s good and what could be better. They want to hear from people who live in North Tyneside or use North Tyneside services. The survey will take 5 to 10 mins to complete and there is the chance to win £25 of high street vouchers. The survey closes on 6 December.

The results of the survey will be shared with service providers and commissioners. Healthwatch will identify ways they can improve the services they provide to make health and social care better for everyone. It is important that everyone has their say in how local health and social care services are delivered. All of the information provided will be stored anonymously.

Read more and take part in the survey here

Share the survey

Healthwatch wants to hear from as many people as possible. Please help by sharing the survey link with your friends and family. If you work for an organisation or business in North Tyneside, Healthwatch would also like to hear from your staff, volunteers and customers.

If you know someone who would like to complete our survey but does not have access to the internet you can ask us for a printed survey by calling 0191 263 5321 or email info@healthwatchnorthtyneside.co.uk


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Volunteers wanted to help create Little Free Libraries in North Tyneside







Josie Robinson, VODA’s Social Action Worker, blogs about the latest project from SAINT and the search for volunteers who can help to build creative ‘little libraries’ in the community:

“SAINT (Social Action in North Tyneside) works with groups of like-minded volunteers to create meaningful social action projects that have an impact on the local community. Our newest SAINT project has been created by a small team of volunteers who are keen to build ‘Little Free Libraries’ and install them at two locations in North Tyneside.

Little Free Library is a not-for-profit organisation that inspires a love of reading, builds community, and sparks creativity by fostering neighbourhood book exchanges around the world. You can check out their website at www.littlefreelibrary.org.

SAINT staff will support both projects from start to finish with a little bit of funding, materials and knowledge of the local area. Volunteers are taking charge of designing, building, decorating, installing and filling the Little Free libraries but they need more people to help make their projects happen.

So far SAINT has gained permission  for the installation of the libraries with our friends at Meadow Well Connected in North Shields and The Rising Sun Country Park in Benton.  We think these are the perfect locations for encouraging people to access free books, share and spend some time with loved ones over a good book. The library at Meadow Well will primarily focus on providing a free place to access children’s books and will also include ‘random acts of kindness’ for each child to complete in return for lending the book. The Rising Sun Country Park Library will focus on books on the topics of nature, local history and wildlife.

These will run as two separate projects where volunteers can take charge of their Little Free Library from start to finish. Our two host venues have also kindly offered us access to free building space and tools.

We’re on the look out for around five volunteers to join our current team to make these projects a reality. Ideally we are looking for:

  • Someone with a little bit of woodwork knowledge for the Benton library that can keep us right!
  • Creative people, to decorate The Little Free Library in Benton
  • Bookworms who might like to support us to fill both libraries with children’s, history and nature themed books.

If you or someone you know might like to get involved with this exciting new social action project then we’d love to hear from you!”


Contact Josie Robinson at VODA for more information.

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Direct Payments support group for North Tyneside carers and parents





Direct Payments are made to people who have been assessed as having social care needs and are eligible for Council-funded support. Instead of the Council arranging services for you, they will pay money into a pre-paid current account for you to buy the support you need in the way that you choose.

Aims of the Support Group

  • To offer peer support and information about the benefits of Direct Payments or the process associated with it
  • To provide a platform for people to share their own experiences or represent the views of the wider community
  • To ensure that the service reflects the needs of the people who use them
  • Enable people to share good practice and raise areas of concern
  • Give ideas and suggestions on how services could be improved

Meetings are held quarterly at the Linskill Centre, Linskill Terrace, North Shields NE30 2AY between 10.30am and 12 noon.

Meeting Dates

  • 13 November 2018
  • 12 February 2019
  • 14 May 2019
  • 13 August 2019
  • 12 November 2019

Please contact for further details or to book your place:
Paula Peart, Community and Health Care Forum, 205 Park Road, Wallsend NE28 7NL
Tel: 0191 2954233
Email: paula.chcf@btinternet.com

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Volunteering opportunity: Could you make a real and positive difference to a child’s life?

Could you make a difference and befriend a child or young person living in care?

Do you have 6-8 hours a month to spare on an evening or weekend when you could spend time with a young person?

North Tyneside Council’s Participation, Advocacy and Engagement Team are currently looking for volunteers to be Independent Visitors for children in care in North Tyneside.  The scheme involves being matched with a young person who is currently in the care system, including children placed in North Tyneside and in neighbouring authorities. The scheme is designed so you meet the young person on a regular basis to do activities you both enjoy and hopefully build up a positive relationship. This can be anything from supporting the young person to join a sports team, seeing films at the cinema, cycling, bowling or dog walking.

Download an Independent Visitor Application Form for more information and to apply for this role or email advocacy@northtyneside.gov.uk for more information.

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Safeguarding training offer for the voluntary sector






North Tyneside Safeguarding Children Board (NTSCB) and Safeguarding Adult Board (SAB) have safeguarding training open to the Voluntary Sector, which can be accessed via the North Tyneside Council online self-serve booking system ‘Learning Pool’.

To access this multi-agency training, anyone who is working with children, young people and/or families who live in North Tyneside, can open a free Learning Pool account and following the instructions for ‘New User’.  From here you can view and book the courses on offer as well as accessing free E-learning modules.  Some of the courses relevant to the voluntary sector include, for example:

  • Safeguarding Children and Adults at Risk in North Tyneside (E-learning)
  • Safeguarding Children and Adults at Risk in North Tyneside (half day face to face)
  • NTSCB Child Protection Introduction (half day)
  • NTSCB Child Protection multi-agency (full day)
  • NTSCB Child Protection Refresher (half day including some evening sessions)

There are other courses available too, including subjects such as; Impact of Domestic Abuse, Parental mental health, Parental Drug and Alcohol misuse and many more. Aims and objectives of the courses can be read on Learning Pool.

Small voluntary organisations (with a turnover of less than £100,000 pa) can access the NTSCB training for free.  Larger organisations will be charged for NTSCB training at £50 per full day, or £25 per half day.  However, you must give two working days’ notice if you need to cancel in order to avoid a non-attendance charge.  There is no charge for the Safeguarding Children and Adults at Risk course and all e-learning is free.

For assistance with opening a Learning Pool account, or booking on, please contact workforce.development@northtyneside.gov.uk or telephone 0191 643 5063.

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