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Phone line launched to help “hidden” carers across Berkshire

East Berkshire and Berkshire West Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs), together with Signal4Carers, are pleased to launch a Berkshire wide Freephone number on the 3rd June, to support those who maybe looking after someone.

Many people who carry out caring responsibilities do not recognise themselves as carers, but may benefit from some support and could be unaware of the help available to them. Many may feel that they are simply carrying out ordinary responsibilities as a friend or family member.

Safeguarding adult reviews across Berkshire, have identified a need for more proactive awareness to support those people who maybe looking after someone. These people are often unregistered carers, and may not be aware of what support is available to aid them in their role. If you are looking after someone, from the 3rd June you can call the Freephone number on 0800 1337851 where you will be offered support and information.

Debbie Hartrick, Associate Director for Safeguarding, East Berkshire CCG and Kathy Kelly, Designated Head of Safeguarding Adults, Berkshire West CCG said:

"We are delighted to be part of this campaign. It is so important that people who are looking after a family member, friend or anyone in a caring role, know how to seek support when they need it."

They added "We are hoping this campaign will raise awareness across our communities and would like to thank our local partnerships, including the Safeguarding Adult Board Partners and NHS England; the support and enthusiasm helped us get this project from an idea to concrete action!"

Mark Sanders Signal4Carers said:

"Signal4Carers is pleased to have the opportunity to host the pilot Freephone number to try and find carers who may need a small amount of support or advice when caring for a relative or friend in the community. It is important for them to feel supported, as caring for someone can be a stressful time for the family"

The Freephone number to call is 0800 1337851 from 10am until 4pm Monday to Friday (message facility for evenings and weekends).

Courier Fraud, Bogus Police and Bank Officials Alert

What you need to know

Individuals have been receiving phone calls from people claiming to be a police officer or banking official.

The suspect will say either:

  • There has been fraudulent activity at the victim's bank and the staff at the bank are involved, the victim is then asked to withdraw money to either keep it safe or assist the police with their investigation
  • A business such as a jewellers or currency exchange is fraudulent and they require the victim's assistance to help secure evidence by purchasing jewellery or exchange a large amount of currency to hand over to the police
  • The victim's card has been compromised and used to purchase goods by a suspect, the victim is requested to withdraw their money to keep it safe or hand over their bank card to the police
  • Occasionally the victim will be told to dial a non-emergency extension of '161' to receive confirmation of the individual's bogus identity, the bogus official will advise the victim to lie about the reason for the withdrawal or purchase if challenged by staff, as the staff member is involved in the fraud
  • A courier attends the victim's home address to collect the goods the same day, often the victim is given a code word for the courier as a way of authentication

What you need to do

Your bank or the police will never:

  • Phone and ask you for your PIN or full banking password
  • Ask you to withdraw money to hand over to them for safe-keeping
  • Ask you to transfer money out of your account
  • Send someone to your home to collect cash, PINs, cards to cheque books

Prevent female genital mutilation (FGM)

Oxford Against Cutting (OAC) is committed to working to help prevent female genital mutilation (FGM) of girls and women.

If you have had FGM/C and have health problems, you can access help at the Oxford Rose Clinic or The Rose Centre in Reading.

MASH / Windsor & Maidenhead Children's Services - 01628 683 150 (Emgergency Duty Team - 01344 786 543).

The Rose Centre, Reading Specialist advice and support hub for FGM survivors - 07903 675 676.

Oxford Rose Clinic, Specialist clinic for FGM survivors - 07767 671 406.

NSPCC - 0800 028 3550 (FGM Helpline)

Childline - 0800 11 11

The Dash Charity (Windsor & Maidenhead domestic abuse services) - 01753 549865.

Police - 999

www.oxfordagainstcutting.org

They also offer training, their charity can deliver sensitive, high quality staff training and student lessons to support learning in primary and secondary schools and professional groups on:

  • Female genital mutilation (FGM)
  • Forced marriage and other forms of honour-based abuse (HBA)
  • Body image (including learning on FGM, female cosmetic genital surgery, unrealistic expectations for body images shown online and how pornography presents a distorted picture of sexual behaviour)
  • Body rights and safety (from all forms of sexual harm) – primary school lesson (including the NSPCC PANTS campaign)

Please visit thie website for more information.

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