14th January 2021
Pastoral Update and Links
We know that this is a challenging time for everyone at the moment so wanted to reassure parent/carers that the Pastoral Team are still in school to offer support to all of our families, even whilst the majority of the children are not currently attending school. We can be contacted by calling the school telephone number 01473 741249 and choosing Option 3.
We know that some of our parents/carers may be finding things hard with financial worries, or from feeling isolated and alone. If you are experiencing any of these feeling, please do not suffer or worry alone. There are things we can do to help and agencies we can put you in touch with. Please do not feel embarrassed to approach us for help. We are all in this together and any enquiry will be treated with the utmost confidence. We also hope some of the following information may be of assistance.
Thanks to the ‘Greggs Foundation’ and their donation, and from generous donations from member of our school community, we are able to offer food parcels if needed. We understand that if you have had to self-isolate, this can greatly affect your finances, especially if you are self-employed. Please get in touch, we can help.
Wellbeing phone calls
You will all be receiving regular phone calls from remembers of staff to make sure the children are accessing Google Classrooms and Tapestry okay. If you have any worries please request a call from a member of the pastoral team and one of us will call you.
Virtual Pastoral meetings
On Wednesday 20th January 2021, we will be trailing a virtual drop in sessions for the Pastoral Team. These will be running from 09:30am-3:30pm and will be 15min session. If you would like to speak to one of the Pastoral Team face to face (virtually) then please book a slot. This is also for the children, so if any of the children would like to speak to Miss Brinkley or Mrs Gotts they are welcome to join the appointment.
Mindfulness- Looking after you
It is important to also look after your mental health and wellbeing during these difficult times, here are a few 1 minute Mindfulness Exercises.
1. Yawn and stretch for 10 seconds every hour.
Do a fake yawn. That will trigger real ones. Say “ahh” as you exhale. Notice how a yawn interrupts your thoughts and feelings.
Then stretch really, really slowly for at least 10 seconds. Notice any tightness and say “ease’. Take another 20 seconds to notice and then get back to what you were doing.
2. Three hugs, three big breaths exercise.
Hug someone tight and take 3 big breaths together. Even if they don’t breathe with you, your breathing will ground them.
3. Stroke your hands.
Close your eyes. Take the index finger of your right hand and slowly move it up and down on the outside of your fingers. Once you have mindfully stroked your left hand, swap and let your left hand stroke the fingers of your right hand.
4. Mindfully eat a raisin.
Take a raisin or a piece of chocolate and mindfully eat it. Slow down, sense it, savour it and smile between bites. Purposefully slow down. Use all your senses to see it, touch it, smell it, and sense it.
Then gently pop it into your mouth and really savour it. Savour its texture, its taste, how it feels in your mouth. Let it linger and then swallow it. After you have swallowed it, let your lips turn up slightly and smile. Do the same thing for each raisin you eat or bite you take.
5. Clench your fist and breathe into your fingers.
Position your fingers and thumbs facing down. Now clench your fist tightly. Turn your hand over so your fingers and thumbs are facing up and breathe into your fist. Notice what happens.
Stand up and breathe. Tune in to your body. Lower your gaze. Scan your body and notice physical sensations or emotions. Discharge any unpleasant sensations, emotions or feelings on the out breath. Notice any pleasant ones and let them fill you up on the in breath.
Observe. Lift your eyes and take in your surroundings. Observe something in your environment that is pleasant and be grateful for it and its beauty.
Possibility. Ask yourself what is possible or what is new or what is a forward step.
If you find yourself being reactive, try the following steps:
Pause and take one to three big breaths.
Say “step back.” (You don’t have to physically step back, you can just do it in your mind.)
Say “clear head.”
Say “calm body.”
Breathe again. Say “relax,” “melt” or “ease.”
7. Mindful breathing for one minute.
Lower your eyes and notice where you feel your breath. That might be the air going in and out at your nostrils or the rise and fall of your chest or stomach. If you can’t feel anything, place your hand on your stomach and notice how your hand gently rises and falls with your breath. If you like, you can just lengthen the in breath and the out breath or just breathe naturally. Your body knows how to breathe.
Focus on your breath. When your mind wanders, as it will do, just bring your attention back to your breath. You might like to say ‘thinking’ when you notice your thoughts and just gently shepherd your attention back to your breath.
This can be done for longer than one minute. However, even for one minute it will allow you to pause and be in the moment. Or you might just like to breathe out stress on the out breath and breathe in peace on the in breath.
Helplines for advice and support
If you or your partner have recently lost your job or have been furloughed it may be that you are now entitled to Free school meals or Universal Credit. Both of these can be claimed online at:
Universal Credit is a payment to help with your living costs and is paid monthly. You may be able to get it if you are on a low income, out of work or you cannot work, and it can help toward your housing costs.
Suffolk Advice and Support Service
Has the impact of Coronavirus left you worrying about your bills, your job or your home? There are people who can help. Call the Suffolk Advice and Support Services phone line on 0800 068 3131, it's open from 9am - 5pm, Monday to Friday. They can provide free professional advice on a range of topics
First Response is a 24/7 helpline offering immediate advice, support and signposting for people with mental health difficulties. If you are experiencing something that makes you feel unsafe, distressed or worried about your mental health you can now call the helpline on 0808 196 3494. The helpline is available to members of the public of any age, regardless of whether they are an existing NSFT service user. Your call will be answered by a trained mental health professional who will be able to listen to your concerns and help you get the support you need.
Suffolk Night Owls
Suffolk Night Owls is a telephone, text and email support service run by Suffolk Mind. It available in Suffolk to anyone who needs emotional support including those with complex emotional needs. To use this this service you need to register online at the above. You can do this by:
Support line workers will be there to listen and support you. They have experience of working within mental health services. The telephone support line is open seven nights a week, 7pm to 1am.
Home, But Not Alone
If you are isolated at home and need help collecting shopping or medication, or are feeling lonely and would like a chat, call the Home, But Not Alone service on 0800 876 6926, it’s open from 9am-5pm, Monday to Friday. Call handlers will be able to provide answers to any questions you may have or link you with local groups and shops who are providing support or services to their local communities.
The Samaritans are there to listen and provide confidential support if you’re struggling in these tough times. If you’re experiencing feelings of distress or despair and feel like things are too much, please know that you don’t have to be alone. The helpline is open 24/7 - call 116 123.
If you, or someone you know, is a victim of domestic abuse please ask for help, help is available to you.
Call 999 from a mobile
Pressing 55 only works on mobiles and does not allow police to track your location.
Call 999 from a landline
If the operator can only hear background noise and cannot decide whether an emergency service is needed, you will be connected to a police call handler.
If you replace the handset, the landline may remain connected for 45 seconds in case you pick up again.
When 999 calls are made from landlines, information about your location should be automatically available to the call handlers to help provide a response
Suffolk's Domestic Abuse Helpline
There is no excuse for abuse. If you, or someone you know, is experiencing domestic abuse, you are not alone and help is available. Suffolk's domestic abuse helpline is open 24/7 - call 0800 977 5690 when it is safe to do so.
USEFUL INFORMATION-How to treat Coronavirus symptoms at home
There is currently no specific treatment for coronavirus (COVID-19), but you can often ease the symptoms at home until you recover.
If you're concerned about your symptoms and need medical advice, use the NHS 111 online coronavirus service.
Treating a high temperature
Treating a cough
DO NOT GO TO THE PHARMACY-If someone you live with has coronavirus you must all stay at home.
Try calling the pharmacy or contacting them on-line instead
NHS Volunteer Responders can help you while you have to stay at home (self-isolate).
They can help with things like collecting shopping and medicines.
Call 0808 196 3646 (8am to 8pm, everyday) to arrange help from a volunteer.
Things to try if you're feeling breathless
Try not to panic if you're feeling breathless. This can make it worse.
Important- feeling breathless can be a sign of a more serious coronavirus infection. If you feel breathless and it is getting worse, get medical advice from NHS 111 online coronavirus service
Local Pharmacies- Contact details:
Asda Pharmacy- 01473 240234
Morrisons-0 1473 747137
8:30-20:00 Mon- Fri
29 Chesterfield Road- 01473 464422
Day Lewis Pharmacy
416 Norwich Road- 01473 741252
289 Norwich Road- 01473 213 016
09:00-13:00 and 14.30-18:00 Mon- Fri
09:00 -13:00 Sat
14 St Matthews Street 01473 212 382
07:00-22:00 Mon- sat
8:00 -18:00 Sun
119 Bramford Rd 01473 254618
We hope you and your families remain safe and well and we look forward to speaking with you and supporting you in every way we can.
With best regards
Miss Nicola Brinkley and Mrs Kate Gotts