What's On - February 2024
Our news feed gives information about upcoming events, training sessions and awareness days. If you know of an event that isn't listed below, please tell your Employment Coordinator so we can add this.
In line with Government updates, there are some changes to our Service. To see these, please click HERE to visit our Covid-19 & Service Updates page.
Training Sessions & Courses
Spring term - Jersey Recovery College
The Jersey Recovery College Spring prospectus is now out and includes a variety of courses and activities. To find out more and book your place on a course, please click here for their prospectus or complete the application form below.
Jersey Recovery College Application Form
Access a range of free and low cost online courses through the Care Academy. Subjects include from Care, First Aid, Safeguarding, Food Safety, Fire Safety and Manual Handling. Click HERE to visit their website and find out more.
A number of exciting courses are on offer for 16 - 25 year olds. To find out more, contact Florrie Copley at Jersey Youth Service on firstname.lastname@example.org
St John's provide a free programme for people who care for others. Check out this link to see more information and how to book.
Their free Carers' Support Programme is for informal carers who are caring for a friend or relative in their own home. They also welcome volunteers who care for people within the voluntary sector.
Some Topics covered:
Session 1 - Useful information on the difficulties carers may have , resources and services available on island , nutrition , pressure area care etc
Session 2 - Dementia Jersey , safety in the home and equipment that may be helpful
Session 3 - Social security presentation on Long Term Care , carers benefits and other related benefits. Social worker assessments
Session 4 - First Aid Training
This course is free to attend.
Later dates for these courses this year are May 14th , 21st, 28th and June 4th and Sept 12th , 19th , 26th and Oct 3rd . Evening courses could be run on request for 6 or more .
Parking is available.
What's on this February
Why not get involved in a local event to support a Jersey charity, or just have fun and meet new people.
Jersey Heritage have some great walking routes available to try on their website - including new Geowalks. These are accompanied guided walks around different areas of Jersey - a partnership between Jersey Heritage and Aspiring Jersey Island Geopark (AJIG). For more information and a link to book tickets please press here.
12-16 February is half term and Jersey Heritage are putting on a week of fun at the Maritime Museum.
Join in for five days of pirate fun with stories, action activities, crafts and general marauding mayhem. This fantastic event has something to entertain everyone. So dig out your eye patches, parrots and Jolly Rogers and become a pirate for the day. The pirates (Griffin Historical) provide exciting events for Historical Royal Palaces and English Heritage - but the Maritime Museum here in Jersey is their favourite place to perform! Hear thrilling stories from the high seas, meet the ships scribe, learn about life onboard a pirate ship and have a go at coin striking. There will be fun pirate fact trails, arts and crafts activities and the opportunity to take part in the battle!
10 February to 17 February
Dreaming Trees will return to Howard Davis Park from 10 February to 17 February 2024 and the park will be illuminated every day from 6pm to 9pm. Explore the illuminated park and learn more about Jersey’s fantastic trees and the exciting scientific research that shows how trees communicate and share resources across a ‘wood wide web’.
As well as the illuminations, a bespoke soundscape has been developed for Dreaming Trees by sound artist and film score composer Tony Langlois.
The department for Infrastructure and Environment, in association with the Creative Island Partnership and with sponsorship by Rathbones Investment Management International, are encouraging people to get outside and enjoy the parks this winter.
For further information, visit this link
To reserve a spot for those who would like a quieter evening if this is useful for anyone who is neurodiverse please click here to visit eventbrite for a ticket. This ticket will be for Sunday 18th February.
Jersey Scrabble Club is looking for members
If you enjoy playing scrabble in a social atmosphere, then please join Jersey Scrabble Club!
The Club meets every Tuesday from 7pm – 10pm at the Salvation Army in Minden Place.
All games are 1 v 1, so new members get help and support if they’re uncertain about how to play or want to learn tactics.
New members can try it for free, and it costs £3 per week once you’ve decided to join, including refreshments.
If you’re interested in joining, call Alex on 07797744228 or email email@example.com.
Best Start Partnership event at St. Paul's Centre on the 9th / 10th of February
Join the Best Start Partnership at St. Paul's Centre on the 9th / 10th of February from 9am to 12pm to hear about the Best Start Partnerships successes and how we are working together to support 0 - 5-year-olds and their families in Jersey, as well as to work with us to plan our 2024 onwards.
Children are welcome to attend this event but must be supervised by a parent/carer.
Please sign up to one of the two event dates (the content will be the same on both dates). You can sign up by following this link
By working together, we can make Jersey the best place for all children to grow up. For more information please click here
Deaf Awareness and Communication course
Deaf Awareness Training will be available in February, to support communication and inclusion of the Deaf Community in Jersey. This is a great initiative to equip the teams across Jersey on how best to support Jersey Deaf Community and also enhance the communication channels into each of the departments.
For more information on the course and to enrol please follow this link: Highlands College The cost for this 8-week course is £210.
You can also contact Highlands on tel. 01534 608655
The course is an introduction to enhancing communication and is an ideal opportunity for those in client facing roles to learn how they can support and communicate with deaf people.
February is LGBT+ History Month, its a time to celebrate diversity and the theme is: Medicine – #UnderTheScope The 2024 theme celebrates LGBT+ peoples’ contribution to the field of Medicine and Healthcare both historically and today. Its about showcasing the amazing work of LGBT+ staff across the NHS and in other healthcare settings, in providing healthcare, especially during the pandemic. Whilst still shining a light on the history of the LGBT+ community’s experience of receiving healthcare which has been extremely complicated leaving LGBT+ people still facing health inequalities even today.
Locally Liberate will help with any questions or giving out relevant information.
1 February - Time to talk day. Its always good to have someone you trust who you can talk to, even more when you have any issues that you need to discuss. If you need support then you can always ask your Employment Coordinator for advice about who to speak to, or try the Listening Lounge on 866793 for an appointment. If you are really struggling, the Samaritans provide a 24 hour service to listen to anyone who calls. Their number is 0330 094 5717.
You could always take advantage of Time to Talk day to make an effort to get back in touch with old friends or acquaintances over a cuppa and cake! It's good to talk!
5-11 February - Tinnitus awareness week. This condition affects lots of people in our community and can be very debilitating. Sufferers often get continuous ringing sounds in their ears which can reduce their quality of life as they battle to hear over the noise. If you have issues with your ears you can speak to Audiology who can advise you.
5-11 February - National Apprenticeship week. The week will reflect on how apprenticeships can help individuals to develop the skills and knowledge required for a rewarding career and help businesses to develop a talented workforce that is equipped with skills for the future. You can ask your EC for information about apprenticeships or contact Skills Jersey/Highlands College.
13 February is Pancake Day as Lent starts the day after. Make sure you use up all your ingredients and enjoy a pancake or two
14 February - St Valentines Day - a day for all those who are in love!
17 February is Random Acts of Kindness Day. What can you do for someone else? Maybe you will have some kindness shown towards you today!
26 February - 3 March is Eating Disorders Week. If you feel you have an issue with food and would like some advice or someone to speak to who will understand you please contact JEDS - (Jersey Eating Disorder Support), they will be able to help and signpost to other agencies.
Public Health will be holding extra MMR vaccine clinics ahead of the half-term break for children who are not up to date with their vaccine schedule. The clinics will be held in the Outpatients Department at the General Hospital on:
- Saturday 3 February, 9am-12pm
- Wednesday 7 February, 4:30pm-6:30pm
Parents will need to book an appointment for their child with the Immunisations Team by calling 01534 445790.
The MMR vaccine is given in two doses. The first is usually given when children reach one year of age. The second dose is usually given around three years and four months of age and protects against measles, mumps, and rubella.
Parents who are unsure if their child is up to date with their vaccines should call the Immunisations Team or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Director of Public Health, Professor Peter Bradley, said: “We have seen a dramatic rise in cases of measles in the UK and in Europe. While our vaccine uptake reaches WHO targets, it's essential that all children are fully protected. With half-term coming up and families going on holiday, there's always a risk of getting ill. "Measles is an unpleasant illness that can result in serious complications, so I urge parents to make sure their children are as protected as possible, especially if they are leaving the Island in the next few weeks." MMR vaccine clinics for children (gov.je)
Income Support component rates increasing from January 2024
The Minister for Social Security, Deputy Elaine Millar, is delighted that the States Assembly has supported her proposition to increase the Income Support component rates from January 2024. This increase will directly benefit over 5,000 low-income households.
This latest change has increased the value of the Income Support components to 20% above the rates in summer 2022, when the current Government was elected.
Last year, immediate action was taken to support Islanders facing challenges with the rising cost of living. This has been followed up this year with significant increases in the Income Support component rates and with additional Income Tax allowances. This latest rise will give all households getting Income Support an increase to their benefit levels from January 2024.
Minister for Social Security, Deputy Elaine Millar, said: "It is reassuring to see that inflationary pressures are starting to ease, but all RPI indictors remain well above the levels that we have been used to over the last decade. Jersey's low-income retail price index tracks the typical expenditure of low-income families. The quarterly value of this index peaked in March 2023 at 8.6%; it fell in June to 6.4% and again in September to 5.8%.
"However, given the rapid rise in prices, an increase for January 2024 linked to that maximum value of 8.6% will make sure that low-income families continue to be well protected against rising prices. I am grateful to the States Assembly for supporting this increase and for collectively ensuring we are helping those that need it the most."
£10m scheme to help first-time buyers onto the property ladder
A new £10 million shared equity scheme to help Jersey’s first-time buyers into home ownership has been announced by the Minister for Housing and Communities, Deputy David Warr. Under the First Step scheme, eligible Islanders will be able to access a Government contribution of up to 40% towards the purchase of an open-market property. The buyer will need to provide a 5% deposit towards the purchase. The funding, which was allocated in a previous Government Plan, will be available as soon as final policy development is completed in partnership with local banks. This is expected to be by spring 2024. From today, Islanders already registered on the Assisted Purchase Pathway are being invited to register their interest by contacting Andium and ensuring their details are up-to-date. Islanders not already registered on the Pathway but wishing to put themselves forward for the new scheme are being encouraged to register their details and interest now. It is anticipated that up to 60 households will be able to benefit from the initial £10 million investment, which the Government will consider extending should the scheme prove successful.
Access to First Step funding will be available to those who have a household income within the Minister for Housing and Communities’ existing assisted purchase eligibility criteria. The allocation of funding will be prioritised towards the lowest-income households, taking into account how long they have been registered on the Pathway. The First Step scheme will also be limited to true first-time buyers, who have never owned property in Jersey or overseas. Islanders wishing to join the Assisted Purchase Pathway, or those wanting to update their details, can do so via the Andium Homes website.
Improvements made to Long-Term Care Scheme communications
The Minister for Social Security, Deputy Elaine Millar, is delighted to announce the completion of a review and enhancements to the Long-Term Care (LTC) Scheme communications, to make them more straightforward and easier to understand. Delivering these enhancements is a key priority of the Minister’s 2023 Delivery Plan. The new communications have been developed after discussions with all stakeholders, including carers and people who currently participate in the LTC scheme.
The workstream to review and improve the communications material, has delivered:
- Updated scheme literature: There is a new Information Pack made up of three separate, newly designed, shorter leaflets to provide clear explanations of each Long-Term Care Scheme scenario and a simple ‘roadmap’ which provides an easy-to-follow, step-by-step guide for someone as they apply for the Long-Term Care Scheme. Information is available in larger font, on request.
- New webpages: To further enhance how information is presented, new webpages have been launched. They offer new content and interactive menus, ensuring that Islanders can access the details they need, quickly and easily. This is available to view. An animated explainer video and EasyRead resources will also be added to the webpages.
Minister widens access to Jersey's Social Housing
More Islanders will be eligible to access social rented homes, following changes to the Affordable Housing Gateway criteria, announced today by the Minister for Housing and Communities, Deputy David Warr.
The Minister has published his "Roadmap for improving access to social housing in Jersey", which outlines a detailed series of steps to widen access, and to improve the way it is managed and promoted.The changes, which include reducing the minimum age of eligibility in a phased way over the next 15 months, reflect a long-standing commitment to continually widen access to social housing as the supply of social rented homes increases.
The eligibility updates mapped out today include:
- Reducing the age of eligibility for people without children gradually, from 40 down to 25. From September 2023, Islanders aged over 35 will be eligible to apply for social housing. This will be widened to age 30 in March 2024 and age 25 in October 2024. Eligibility to access social housing begins at age 18 for households with children, but for households with no children, the age of eligibility has traditionally been much higher.
- Further increasing income thresholds. The maximum income thresholds for social housing will be gradually increased to better reflect the needs of Islanders who may need help with their housing costs. These changes will be implemented in stages, with those who qualify for two-, three- and four-bedroom homes eligible from September 2023. The new limits will range from £61,956 per year (single applicant and one child) up to £92,079 per year (joint applicant and three children or more).
- From September 2023, in the case of separated families, the second household will become eligible to apply for a home with one additional bedroom, to accommodate child stays. At present, only the first household is eligible to access additional bedrooms for children.
- From September 2023, grandparents who provide care for their grandchild(ren) with additional needs will be eligible to request a transfer to a two-bedroom home. This will enable family support networks to provide care and respite.
The Minister for Housing and Communities, Deputy David Warr, said: "I'm pleased to be making these changes, which mean more Islanders will be able to access affordable, good-standard and secure homes. This reflects my commitment of supporting Islanders who continue to experience housing and cost of living pressures, as well as thinking towards the long-term and achieving a housing market that meets the needs of everyone in our community.
Customer and Local Services (CLS) appointments system and contact details
How to access Customer and Local Services
You can book an appointment with the different service hubs by clicking on to a link below:
- business hub (starting or ending a business, running a business or staff recruitment)
- pensions and care hub (age related benefits, long term care and income support)
- work and family hub (income support, student finance, health benefits, impairments and contributions)
- service hub (new resident registration and registration cards)
You can access their services:
- by calling on +44 (0)1534 444444
- by emailing email@example.com
- in person during opening hours
- Visit Customer and Local Services (CLS)
Mind Jersey have started several new groups in their centres in town. They are generally open for anyone who needs support, friendship or a chat! There are lots of options, from Man Club to a DVD club, Art groups to a walking group. The best way to find out what is happening is on their facebook page, follow this link. Their new hub is called 'Friends of Mine' and can be found on Seale Street not far from the Town Hall. You can drop in to see them and get support, free tea/coffee and a chat. They are open from 10am to 4pm Monday to Friday - give it a try! If you need to find out more you can call their admin line 07829 933929
Macmillan Jersey are offering some new wellbeing fitness classes to try out. If you have been supporting a loved one with cancer, or have recently lost someone to cancer, maybe you've finished cancer treatment and trying to feel more like yourself again, and make some healthy changes to your lifestyle.
You might like to try Macmillan Jersey's new Boxing Better wellbeing fitness class with The Rock Fitness.
Not only is exercise essential for physical and mental health - but these classes can be empowering, cathartic and a great way to relieve stress and channel your energy into something positive through a difficult time.
Sign up today for a block of 12 free sessions (2 per week) by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or calling 498188.
Shopmobility offers a highly subsidised scheme aimed mainly, but not exclusively, at individuals on Income Support who do not meet the criteria for Health supplied equipment. The scheme is designed for those who wish to boost their mobility and enhance their quality of life, thus avoiding the need to consider entering a care home or indeed suffering periods of time in hospital and therefore remaining for longer in their own domestic setting to the benefit of their wellbeing. Proof of need to participate in the scheme is required from either a doctor, including individual GPs, the Occupational or Physiotherapy Departments of Health and Community Services.
The cost to the individual in participating in the scheme is set at £35 per calendar month, easily met from the mobility element of Income Support, with this charge covering insurance, batteries (replacement if needed) and on-going equipment maintenance, along with delivery and collection as needed.
The scooters provided will remain the property of Shopmobility and will be collected when no longer required. In the interests of safety full training is offered by Shopmobility so insurance cover is extended to the scheme and the Charity reserves absolutely the right to refuse applications as deemed appropriate if there are concerns over safe usage at its discretion.
Applications and advice regarding the scheme are readily available not only to potential users but to their family and friends via direct contact at Shopmobility in the Lower Ground Floor of Sand Street Car Park or by phone on 739672.
Alternatively prospective clients can email Mr Edward Trevor, MBE ( Hon Chairman) using email@example.com who will respond as necessary.
Video Magnifier Project
EYECAN prides itself on its responsiveness to needs in the community. This year EYECAN launched a video magnifier project, which involves the phased distribution of long-term loan video magnifiers to care venues and libraries. The devices support individuals with sight loss to access books, documents, undertake precision tasks such as colouring and needlework, and to revisit photographs, which can prompt reminiscence.
Eyecan is pleased to announce that a video magnifier is now available for the public to use at the Library in St Helier. It is situated on the ground floor in an accessible place to the left of the front doors. A staff member should be on hand to show people how to use it.
The ClearView C is a desktop video magnifier for people with low vision. It is designed for people who need magnification to read, write or do their hobbies. The size of the text can be greatly increased, and the image can be enhanced to provide clearer contrast.
The Government’s Parental Support Payment has launched and is open for applications.
You may be eligible to apply if you meet all the following criteria:
- You have lived in Jersey for less than five years
- You have “registered” status
- You have children under the age of 18
- Your gross household income last year was no more than £36,000 for a single person and £48,000 for a couple
Payments are £250 for one child and £500 for two or more children.
To apply for this money please speak to your EC or call 444444 to speak to someone in Customer and Local Services who will be able to help you.
The Community Cost Bonus (CCB) is doubling from £258.25 to £516.50 and extending eligibility for claimants.
You can receive this payment for your household if:
• One adult has lived in Jersey for at least 5 years
• The combined household tax bill was less than £2,735 in 2021
• The household is not receiving Income Support
Other measures in the budget include
- A temporary reduction of 2% in Social Security contributions from 1 October to 31 December 2022:
- Class 1 employee paid contributions decreasing from 6% to 4%
- Class 2 self employed or unemployed paid contributions decreasing from 12.5% to 10.5%
If you have questions about any of these please check in with your EC and they can help with any enquiries you may have. Otherwise contact CLS on 444444.
Gov.je has a new website for those with a learning disability, transforming how they can access information - it is now live here
The site, which has been reviewed by service users, improves how information is presented to make sure it is in an accessible and easy to understand format. The project was undertaken as Islanders with learning disabilities struggled with complex information on gov.je and needed help to understand it.
The Adult Learning Disability Team has worked with the Government of Jersey’s Web Services Team in consultation with service users to create the site which delivers “easy read” content in HTML format. It presents information as a combination of images and clear, understandable text. Check it out on the link above and see if its a useful service for you.
Support available from Housing Advice Service
The Government’s Housing Advice Service has now been set up to provide a wide range of information, advice and practical support around all aspects of housing in Jersey. This ranges from providing help to property owners, landlords, tenants, those looking to buy or sell a property, those at risk of becoming homeless, or those with housing-related concerns or complaints.
The specialist team, based at Philip Le Feuvre House, La Motte Street, work in partnership with agencies, organisations and other government departments to ensure that the appropriate wrap around support is provided, tailored to the needs of each individual.
Minister for Housing and Communities, Deputy David Warr, said: “We want to make sure that Islanders are aware of the support that’s available to them and how they can access it. By working with a range of organisations, we are committed to raising the visibility of the network of agencies that are working together to deliver this service.
“I would encourage those that need it to access the services that we have available, and to contact the team who are in a prime position to support Islanders and provide their expertise.”
Find out more
Phone: 01534 444 444
Address: Customer and Local Services PO Box 55, La Motte Street, St Helier, Jersey, JE4 8PE
Don't put off your cervical screening
We have recently had Cervical Screening Awareness Week, women and people with a cervix aged 25-64 are being encouraged to opt-in to the free cervical screening programme.
Cervical screening detects Human Papillomavirus (HPV), a viral infection passed between people through skin-to-skin and sexual contact which is the main cause of cervical cancer. If HPV is detected the screening sample will then be checked for any underlying abnormalities of the cervical cells.
Women and people with a cervix are reminded that they need to opt-in to the programme when they turn 25 by contacting their GP.
It is important that Islanders attend their screenings regularly (every three years for those aged 25-50, and every five years for those aged 50-64) as HPV can lie dormant for many years. Read more in Don’t put off your cervical screening (gov.je)
Coop Quiet Hour - In conjunction with Autism Jersey and the National Autistic Society, Coop Grande Marche St Peter and St Helier are extending their Quiet Hour on Mondays from 3 - 5pm and Saturdays 5-7pm Read more here
Concessionary bus pass scheme to include free travel for companions
Carers or companions of eligible Islanders in the AvanchiAccess scheme will be able to travel on the bus for free, following an extension of the scheme by the Infrastructure, Housing and Environment (IHE) department.
The existing AvanchiAccess scheme provides unlimited free travel for Islanders who have a long-term disability preventing them from driving. The new AvanchiAccess+ scheme includes free travel for carers or companions who need to assist those Islanders who cannot travel alone on the bus some or all of the time.
Eligible Islanders who are part of the existing scheme or new customers that want to apply for the AvanchiAccess+ scheme should pick up an application form from Liberation Station, parish halls, doctors' surgeries and community organisations around the Island to apply. The pass will then be ready to use from 1 October.
Islanders must meet the eligibility criteria which includes having a long-term disability that prevents them from driving and the need to have a companion assist them on the bus some or all of the time.
Free screening checks to prevent sight loss
Islanders with diabetes are being urged to come forward to check if they are at risk of losing their sight to one of the leading – but largely preventable – causes of blindness in the developed world.
Diabetic retinopathy is one of the top five causes of blindness and sight loss in both the working age population and developed world. There are about 4,500 Islanders with diabetes and the team carry out about 5,000 free screening checks, which involves taking a variety of 2D and 3D images of the back of the eye (retina) to look for diabetic changes, a year.
Improvements to the service, which began last year, means that the waiting list for retinal screening has been cleared and the team is now urging anyone who feels they should be screened to contact them by calling 01534 444590. The clinics are free and can be offered in Spanish, Portuguese and Polish. Please check out the information here
The Government of Jersey recently announced that following the recent increase in the price of gas in Jersey, extra support is being made available for vulnerable customers and those on low income who use gas to heat their homes. Support includes Jersey Gas’ “Priority Customer Care” scheme, which can provide assistance with spreading out bill payments, home comfort checks and a range of other measures. There is also a financial support scheme for customers who are worried about being able to pay their gas heating bills.
Jersey Gas are encouraging any customer who is concerned about paying their bills to contact them on 01534 755577 to find out more about the various support options available.
The Salvation Army are continuing helping those in need this year.
Their year-round support is available at their Minden Place premises, call Salvation Army HQ on 735472, the office is open 9-1 Monday to Friday for more details of their help.
- Food bank – the Salvation Army food bank will be running for those in short-term financial crisis. Food parcels include toiletries and baby items such as nappies/wipes/formula. For longer term support, i.e. more than 6 weeks, please consider referring to the other foodbanks on the island.
- Voucher support will continue to be available for those in immediate financial hardship. This includes utility top-ups (Jersey Electric, heating oil, and Jersey Gas) and supermarket vouchers.
- Community cafe is open offering free soup daily.
Pastoral support – the Salvation Army are always happy to listen and chat with people and offer pastoral support and/or signposting as appropriate, in their friendly community cafe.
There are more food banks in operation at the moment on Island, The Grace Trust offer food to those in need from their base in Lewis Street, they are happy to help and can be contacted to talk through difficulties. Please follow this link for their website.
SVP (Saint Vincent de Paul Society) also provides food bank access, they are open on Wednesday afternoons and Saturday mornings. They are based in an office at the side of St Thomas Church in St Helier. For more information please follow this link
If you need any further help or information about any of the above please talk to your Employment Coordinator, we can assist with referrals or point you in the right direction.