Wednesday,18th March 2020

Dear Signpost Supporter,

We are writing to you today to give you an update on Signpost’s activities
and services. We wanted to let you know that we are still very much here
for you, our carers, and will do whatever we can to ensure that you can
continue to access our support.

In line with government recommendations, we have made changes to our
services and the way we deliver them.

Changes to services

  • We have stopped home visits.
  • All groups, activities and regular events are now postponed or
    cancelled until further notice.
  • Those carers who are currently accessing our counselling service will
    now be offered sessions over the phone.
  • The Signpost team will generally be working from home but we have
    put arrangements in place to ensure that we can still respond to calls
    and messages. Please be aware that it may take slightly longer than
    usual for you to speak to one of our carer support workers. If the
    phones are off, or ringing unanswered, please do leave a message on
    our voicemail or email [email protected] and someone will
    be in touch with you when we can.

New and continuing services

  • We are now offering a text number to carers. If you find it difficult to
    use the phone due to hearing loss, or privacy issues, please text us on
    07823403383 including your surname and postcode. We will then
    communicate with you via text message.
  • We are also hoping to establish a ‘live chat’ option on our website and
    have our closed facebook group for those carers that use the internet
    and social media. This is a great way to chat to other carers.
  • We will try to offer a ‘here to help’ service. If you are stuck, please give
    us a call. If possible, we will try to help –whether this is dropping off
    bread and milk or providing contact details for local community
    schemes. If you’re feeling lonely and isolated, you can also just ring us
    for a chat – human interaction is so important for our wellbeing.
    We can offer carers assessments over the phone, and complete benefit
    applications online. These require a preplanned telephone
    appointment with a member of the team, so contact us in one of the
    usual ways to arrange this.
  • Our volunteer is available to conduct relaxation sessions using Skype. If
    you would like to book in for this, please contact in the usual way.
    We will be continuing to provide Connecting Carers cards, and urge all
    carers to think about contingency planning and who your emergency
    contacts would be should something happen to you. To apply for a
    card, contact us to request a form. Photos should be emailed to
    [email protected] (posted to the Heatons Centre) and
    Claire will produce and send out the cards.

We know that the measures being taken to prevent the spread of COVID-
19 (Corona Virus) increase the already considerable challenges of caring
for someone. Restrictions on visiting, unable to catch up with friends or
family members, not popping out to the shops or groups that you depend
on…all have a real impact on the pressures felt by your caring role.

None of us know how long we will find ourselves in this situation. What we
at Signpost Stockport for Carers do know is that we have a committed and
dedicated team, here to listen and support anyone with an unpaid caring
role in Stockport. We may not have the answers, or be able to practically
improve your situation, but we will do all we can.

Yours sincerely,

The Signpost team