Check here regularly for all the latest information we receive for families, parents and carers.
Southampton City Council is working closely with Public Health England (PHE) to provide the latest Government and local advice for you on our coronavirus webpage.
You'll find information on schools, money and benefits, support for businesses, bins and recycling, venue closures and public transport as well as links to official Government guidance across sectors such as transport and residential care. There are also links to the latest NHS health advice.
The Government has translated the guidance for self-isolation and social distancing into the following languages: Arabic, French, Mandarin, Cantonese, Polish, Welsh. The relevant links are below:
23 March 2021
- The DWP has launched a new tool for people to check if they are entitled to receive benefits and what they might be able to claim for. If you are eligible, you could also receive additional benefits, such as half-price travel and childcare payments.
08 February 2021
- The Early Years Team of Southampton City Council will be running a ZOOM meeting for parents/carers on Tuesday 9th February from 8pm to 9pm. They would like to know:
What has gone well for you in accessing services for you and your under 5
And what could be better? Right from being pregnant through to your child going to school. How was it for you finding out about support?
What would make this easier? Please join us & other Southampton parent/carers for a ZOOM meeting. To join: Please email your name & comments quoting ZOOM Meeting to firstname.lastname@example.org. Who will reply sending the link.
04 February 2021
- Department for Education - Information for parents and carers about attending schools, nurseries and colleges in the spring term 2021. February 2021.
03 February 2021
- In-Health have launched a new Paediatric Audiology website. A self-referral form can be found on the website. InHealth offers free NHS hearing tests for children in and around the Southampton area; Babies who fail their Newborn Screening test will be referred to their service for Diagnostic testing and they also complete hearing checks from 8 months up to 16 years and up to 19 years for children with additional needs. If you are concerned about your child’s hearing, speech and language development, or you would like to have your child’s hearing assessed due to a family history of hearing loss Inhealth can help.
01 February 2021
- Are you a Black, Asian or Minority Ethnic child, young person, parent or carer, affected by Covid-19? You can speak to us about your worries, problems and stresses during this time, and we can provide emotional support, practical advice and signposting to other organisations who can provide further help. If you have been affected by the pandemic and you need advice or someone to talk to, you can call us confidentially on 0800 1512605 or, if you prefer to have an online chat with the specialist support advisor, you can do this via the live webchat. Our trained staff are awaiting your phone calls or webchats Mon-Fri, 10am-8pm, and Sat-Sun 10am-3pm. https://helpline.barnardos.org.uk/
26 January 2021
- The Lullaby Trust has produced a guide for parents giving advice on Safer Sleep for Babies (PDF 481 KB).
21 January 2021
- Are you homeless or risk of becoming homeless? The Southampton Church Rent Deposit Scheme (PDF 6MB) aims to help people on low income or in receipt of welfare benefits who need funding to gain access to privately rented accommodation in the city.
18 January 2021
- Help paying for your childcare - informaton about Tax Free Childcare (PDF 331 KB)
18 September 2020
- The government have issued - translations of the information for parents and carers about going back to schools, nurseries and colleges in the autumn term.
09 September 2020
- A new 10 week level 1 introduction to Health, Social Care and Children & Young People's Settings has been introduced.
10 August 2020
- The Government have issued Staying alert and safe – social distancing guidance for young people.
- The Government have released - Support for working families affected by coronavirus (COVID-19) given an extra boost
29 July 2020
- The UK education system: To assist parents we have produced advice on the UK education system which has also been translated into Romanian, Polish, Russian and Arabic.
08 July 2020
- Citizen Advice Southampton Number Change: From 1st July, Citizen Advice Southampton have issued a new contact number for clients to get advice from them. The new number is: 0300 3302166. The new number will ensure that Southampton residents speak to an adviser from the Southampton office wherever possible, including mobile callers. When all their local advisers are busy, calls will be redirected to the Hampshire group. The new number replaces both the Adviceline number and our local office number.
03 July 2020
- Advice for parents during coronavirus - from The Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health and Healthier Together.
- What parents need to know about COVID-19 - from The Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health, NHS and Healthier Together.
- Children Heard and Seen support children, young people and their families who are impacted by parental imprisonment. Due to the current Coronavirus crisis, they are now running online support groups.
19 June 2020
- Department for Education (DfE): What parents and carers need to know about early years providers, schools and colleges during the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak.
- Coronavirus Update for Parents re 30 hours free childcare and/or tax-free childcare (PDF 85KB)
10 June 2020
- Maternity and Paternity Update: Parents returning to work after extended leave will be eligible for the furlough scheme. HM Treasury has announced that people on paternity and maternity leave who return to work in the coming months will be eligible for the Government’s furlough scheme. This also applies to people on adoption leave, shared parental leave, and parental bereavement leave. More details of the change will be included in updated guidance, to be published on 12 June.
21 May 2020
- We have received details of some useful posters and resources produced by the University of Chichester to help parents and childcare providers with Early Years education during the current pandemic. Parents may find the posters in the document particularly useful. To find these please scroll down to the Booklets section.
- It’s Foster Care Fortnight! Now more than ever, more foster carers are needed to give children and young people stable, loving environments and a chance for their futures. In return, carers are paid, receive training and 24/7 support. Visit www.southampton.gov.uk/fostering for more information.
- Safe Families: If you feel your family may benefit from support to keep safe specifically within the lockdown period of Covid-19, you can self-refer. The parent/carer should complete a form online at https://helpme.safefamilies.uk/ Basic information will be collected: name, contact number, Local Authority area. A Safe Families staff team member will ring back within 24 hours, Monday to Friday, with evening calls available, to help assess your needs and begin support.
19 May 2020
- A Parent’s Guide to Promoting Early Learning and Development at Home (0 - 5 years) Supporting Families During the Coronavirus Pandemic
11 May 2020
- CAPT (Child Accident Prevention Trust) have compiled a short list of useful information to help parents keep children safe during the lockdown.
06 May 2020
- Face Mask Warning for Babies and Children Under 2. Solent NHS Trust has advised that face masks should NOT be used for babies and children under 2. Wearing a face mask in this age group can put babies and children at serious risk of harm or death:
1. Babies and young children have smaller airways so breathing through a mask is harder for them.
2. Masks could increase the risk of suffocation because they are harder to breathe through.
3. Babies are unable to remove the mask should they have trouble breathing.
4. Infants could be at risk of becoming tangled, especially if they try to remove a mask, potentially causing serious injury.
5. Older infants or young toddlers are not likely to keep the mask on and will touch their face more to try and remove it.
- Families Hampshire West Magazine is a popular and established free parenting magazine for parents with kids aged 0 ‐14 in the local area. They have published a ‘lockdown’ digital issue which is full of helpful ideas for parents including home learning resources, family health, pre-school play, activities and much more. The digital magazine can be viewed and/or downloaded at Families Hampshire West Lockdown Issue or via the Families Hampshire West Magazine Facebook Post.
- Boogie Mites are sharing music-related ‘transition to school’ resources they have developed to be used in home settings during this lockdown period. If you care for children starting at Primary School in September you will be looking for home learning online resources to support them to get ready for school. Usually during the Summer term Boogie Mites teachers would be visiting schools to deliver transition sessions covering Boogie Mites School Ready Music Programme. They have been busy making videos during lockdown so that parents and children can still learn how to prepare literacy, maths and general learning foundations ready for school, through music. They have set up a transitions Facebook group on their Facebook page exclusively for broadcasting their videos of sessions in late May and June, for children to join in with their parents at home.
You can read their blog about transition and join their transition Facebook group. They would also like to share their song 'Wash Your Hands' which they have written for making hand washing fun in early years.
30 April 2020
- No Limits Youth Workers are running support sessions via Zoom on a number of topics to help support children and young people with their health and well-being. Topics include: Online Safety, Knife Crime, Buzz - Drugs & Alcohol, Relationships & Sex Education, Managing My Emotions - Anger & Anxiety. If you'd like to sign up to any of the sessions, or you'd like to find out more, please phone 02380 224 224 or email email@example.com.
21 April 2020
Hungry Little Minds update. New content has been published on GOV.UK to support parents with children in the early years on supporting their children’s learning at home during the Covid-19 outbreak.
It aims to provide clear answers to the most common things they feel parents are worried about. The intention is to reassure parents that they are not expected to be early years practitioners or teachers, but to support their child’s wellbeing and learning as much as possible.
They have also listed some online educational resources on the Hungry Little Minds website to help pre-school children to learn at home. These have been brought together by some of the country’s leading educational experts and are free to use. You can also find a link to these resources for all age groups on GOV.UK.
A team of academics from the Universities of Oxford, Southampton and Reading have published a survey aiming to understand how families with pre-school children are coping with the challenges of COVID-19. The survey focuses on the mental and emotional health of families and their children and is aiming to engage with 5,000 families across the UK.
20 April 2020
- Department for Education advice for parents and carers of children aged 2 to 4 on how to learn at home during coronavirus (COVID-19).
16 April 2020
- New 24/7 helpline launched: amid increased domestic abuse during the COVIS-19 outbreak Aurora New Dawn offers safety, support, advocacy, and empowerment to survivors of domestic abuse, sexual violence and stalking. Details are also available on Facebook and Twitter.
14 April 2020
- For Parents and Carers - A Special COVID-19 Message: When your child is ill or injured it is very difficult to decide if/when to call your child’s GP, NHS 111, or go the Accident and Emergency Department (A&E). While the government is asking everyone to stay at home, it can be confusing to know what to do. Here is some guidance around what to do if your child shows any of the following symptoms or signs: NHS Parent Guide - COVID19 14-04-20 (PDF 537KB) . For further advice on COVID-19 and childhood illnesses/injuries visit WWW.NHS.UK.
03 April 2020
- There are some incredibly useful resources on Winston's Wish regarding COVID-19 and child bereavement under "useful resources and information" including "telling a child someone has died from Coronavirus" and how to say goodbye when a funeral isn't possible".
25 March 2020
Think Ninja Comms - Southampton (PDF 109KB): a free App to support children and young people with their mental health and emotional wellbeing in this time of uncertainty.
20 March 2020
- Coronavirus Update: Child health clinics held in Southampton Children Centres are closing from next week 23 March 2020.
There will be a ‘Duty’ operated clinic for families to phone in with feeding/minor health issues etc. (Normal Clinic queries).
Those families who need ‘face to face’ contact for specific weight monitoring, jaundice review, they will be offered appointed times in a Children’s Centre, which will be booked via ‘Duty’ phone call or health visitors/community health nurses following visits.
Monday: Pickles Coppice – 9.30 – 12.30
Tuesday: Cutbush – 12.30 – 15.30
Wednesday: Clovelly – 12.30 – 15.30
Thursday: Pickles Coppice – 9.30 – 12.30
Friday: Cutbush – 9.30 – 12.30
- World Book Online have just made their fabulous collection of over 3,000 ebooks and audiobooks available for free for children to access at home. They have books suitable for all ages. Please bear in mind that the World Book Online site may become extremely busy and loading times may therefore increase.
05 March 2020
- Department for Education Coronavirus helpline: a new helpline has been launched to answer questions about COVID-19 related to education. Staff, parents and young people can contact the helpline as follows:
Phone: 0800 046 8687
Opening hours: 8am to 6pm (Monday to Friday)
27 February 2020
- Hungry Little Minds is a 3 year DfE- led campaign designed to make it easier for parents to support their child’s early development at home by chatting, playing and reading with them. Much more information and resources can be found on the gov.uk website.
There is also now an app which has been developed to help parents make informed decisions about the use of technology in creating a positive learning environment at home. The full list of apps can be found on the Hungry Little Minds website.
05 December 2019
- CAMHS Southampton City Directory of Services and Support v2.1 (PDF 646KB): A new directory compiled by CAMHS (the Child And Adolescent Mental Health Service) has just been released. It contains a lot of useful information on services and support in the City for those with emotional and mental health issues.
30 May 2019
- News for grandparents: We now have a webpage dedicated to grandparents. There are details of national and local agencies and services who can advise and support you including a link to the Protecting children website and information on grandchild/ren and the involvement of Children’s Services.
08 April 2019
- Thinking about working with children? If you’d like to know more about becoming an Early Years and Childcare Practitioner visit our Working in Childcare webpage. Find out about working in a nursery, preschool or out of school club, as well as about becoming a childminder in your own home.
01 March 2019
- CitizEn Energy: Set up by Southampton City Council, CitizEn Energy’s main goal is to make the energy market fairer. CitizEn Energy wants everyone to get involved and be part of this change. Not only does CitizEn Energy provide fairly priced gas and electricity, they’re also putting any money earned back in to the local community. Whilst it was set up by Southampton City Council, it is also available across the South, South West and the Midlands. For more information see the Citizen Energy Advertorial - March 2019 (PDF 303KB) leaflet.