Author Archives: donnacvs

Support Available over Christmas and New Year

Below are some of the organisations that are offering support over Christmas and New Year period 2021

Dudley Council Plus are closed on the 24, 27 & 28 of December. They reopen on the 29, 30 & 31 of December. Support for emergency assistance payments will be available but on reduced capacity.

Domestic Abuse/Women’s Refuge
The Refuge service will be open and contactable 24/7 throughout and can provide telephone support, a Refuge place and coordinate with other Refuge services across the country. This includes access to the homelessness service emergency bed too. The main number for our Refuge is 01384 866334 and more info on our website:

DMBC’s safe & sound is reminding people that victims of domestic abuse can get help and support this Christmas by calling 📱01384 455411 24 hrs a day.

There are the national helplines too.

Young People’s Supported Housing
CHADDs Foyer service will be open 24/7 and this also includes access to an emergency bed for any young people presenting as homeless/roofless. The E-Bed is accessed through DMBC homeless service at Dudley Council Plus out of hours service or we can provide some help and coordination through calling: 01384 237555.

Our other services – sheltered housing, supported living, community support will have some services operating or are 24/7 anyway for their specific residents on site.

Black Country Foodbank
The opening times of Black Country Foodbanks will be on their website, they are being updated daily so please check the website:

Public Health have emergency food and toiletry parcels that they can access out of hours. 01384 814444

Housing Finance
Our services will be closed to the public from the 23rd Dec to the 4th Jan although managers (Yvonne Steele, Alison Charley and Kelly Read) will be in the office and available on the 29th, 30th and 31st Dec.
Yvonne – 01384-811686 (30th & 31st)
Alison Charley – 01384-812476 (29th Dec)
Kelly Read – 01384-812486 (29th & 30th)

Benefits , Revenues and Isolation payments are all open during normal opening times over Christmas.
If there are any problems or issues, Steph Faulkner is the manager to contact during this period.

Homelessness Team will be open for business as usual during each working day up to and including the 23rd December. During the Christmas period and Bank Holidays the service will continue to operate as an ‘out of hours service’ accessible by telephone until the service re-opens for business as usual again on 29th December 2021.
The service will be accessible by telephone using the out of hours service over the New Year weekend and Bank Holiday will re-open in the New Year on 4th January.

Team Manager is Hayley Rowley

Citizens Advice is open until Thursday 23rd December 2021 and then over the Christmas period the following services are open:
• Adviceline for the public to ring for any advice issue 0300 3309 044 open Wednesday 29 December 9.30am – 3.30pm
• Opened for pre booked appointments on 29th and 30th December
• Debt Helpline 07799 070595 available 29th and 30th December
• Debt self referral via our website 24/7,referrals will be actioned 29th and 30th December
• Universal Credit Hep to Claim Service 0800-144-8444 open 29/30/31 December

Normal service will resume on Tuesday 4 January 2022. All our staff are currently working from home.

Community Support

• Vi at Leslie’s Care Packages is taking referrals for people who need turkeys etc. or presents –
• Hope House is open Christmas Day 4pm for turkey sandwiches, roast potatoes and pudding plus chat, company and some festive fun. Open to anyone.
• Halesowen Scout Group free Christmas two course lunch on Sunday 19th December delivered between 1.30pm and 3.30pm, will need heating up, to be confirmed before 16th December, call Ian on 07970 560 463.
• Amblecote Christian Centre – Christmas Day Meal call 01384 375 111

Places of welcome
The information below relates specifically to Places of Welcome, where the Place of Welcome is held in a church/community centre – other events may be happening, but just not Places of Welcome. ie Christmas Services/parties

Top Church will be open on Wednesday 29th December 1-3pm Free hot drinks with optional activities, all welcome St Thomas and St Luke
Top Church, High Street, Dudley, DY1 1QD

Hope House, Springs Church, 7 Zoar Street, Lower Gornal, Dudley, DY3 2PA – Mondays and Tuesdays 09:30 – 14:30 plus NEW Community Garden
Mondays and Tuesdays as normal 9.30am – 2.30pm until 20th and 21st December.

We will then be open
Christmas Day 4pm – 6pm

We will then reopen on Tuesday 4th January 9.30am.

Woodside Internet Centre, Hallchurch Road, Holly Hall, Dudley, DY2 0TQ – Mondays 10:00 – 15:30
Open 20th Dec
Closed 27th Dec
Open 3rd Jan

Community Hub, 16A Stone St, Dudley, DY1 1NS – Tuesdays 10:30 – 12:30
Open 21st Dec
Closed 28th Dec
Open 4th Jan

Primrose Hill Community Church, The Hub at PHCC, Chapel Street,Netherton, Dudley, DY2 9PN
Open 22nd Dec
Open 29th Dec
Open 5th Jan

Top Church, St Thomas and St Luke’s, High Street, Dudley, DY1 1QD – Wednesdays 13:00 15:00
Open 22nd Dec
Open 29th Dec
Open 5th Jan

Rainbow Street Community Centre, 49 Rainbow Street, Coseley, WV14 8SX – Thursdays 10:00 – 12:00
Open 23rd Dec
30th Dec TBC

Open Door Cafe, Christ Church, High Street, Lye, Stourbridge, DY9 8LF – Fridays 11:00 – 13:00
St John’s Church, Leys Road, Brockmoor, DY5 3UR – Saturdays 10:00 – 12:00
Closed 25th Dec
Closed 1st Dec

Black Country Mental Health, The Hub, Bushey Fields Hospital Site, Bushey Fields Road, Dudley, DY1 2LZ – Sundays 15:00 – 17:00 *If arriving by car, please call 07951580792 for site barrier code
Open 19th Dec
Open 26th Dec
Open 2nd Jan

Contact officer:
Carrie Blount

Places of Welcome & Buddying Facilitator Black Country

Mobile: 07377 918 101





Safe and Well home safety checks

West Midlands Fire Service is committed to making its communities safer, healthier and stronger. In recent months we have seen an increase in house fires starting in the kitchen and part of our strategy to tackle this is to deliver safe and well visits to everyone, but mainly targeting our more vulnerable members of the community. We aim to improve safety in the home, offer road safety advice and signpost where appropriate. Fire fighters will fit smoke alarms and specialist equipment where needed free of charge and will leave you with a booklet with handy tips for making your home as safe as possible. Please use the QR code to book a safe and well with your local fire crew and help make the West Midlands a safer, healthier and stronger place to live.

Safe and Well – West Midlands Fire ServiceSafe and Well visits, formally home safety checks, enable us to advise and educate on safety at home. We also fit free smoke alarms!

Resilience Course – helping you cope with life’s setbacks

Castle and Priory Neighbourhood Learning Centre Dudley

Resilience – Masterclass Details:

The aim of this course is to enable you to understand how to become more resilient and cope with setbacks in life, improve wellbeing and achieve your goals.

Date: Friday 9th July 2021 (10.30 – 12.30) Venue: Castle & Priory Neighbourhood Learning Centre

Cost: FREE

Contact: 01384 818143 or

Are you are green fingered keen gardener?

Are you interested in gardening or would you like to grow your own veg? If so, you are very welcome to join The Priory Pharmacy Community Garden. There’s no need to bring anything, just turn up on a Monday from 2pm – 4pm.

The Priory Community Garden has reopened and is now a Covid Safe ‘Place of Welcome’. There will always be a cuppa, biscuits and maybe some homemade cake to enjoy. You can find out more on Facebook at:

Children’s Mental Health Week

Children’s Mental Health Week is taking place on 1-7 February 2021. This year’s theme is Express Yourself.


Expressing yourself is about finding ways to share feelings, thoughts, or ideas, through creativity. This could be through art, music, writing and poetry, dance and drama, photography and film, and doing activities that make you feel good.

The Children’s Mental Health website has lots of free resources that will help children and young people to explore what it means to Express Yourself. All of the ideas can be adapted for use in school, for home-schooling, online lessons or independent learning. 

You can get more information from a Place2B which is a children’s mental health charity with over 25 years’ experience working with pupils, families and staff in UK schools.

Free, Exciting, Virtual activities for young people!

St Thomas’s Community Association are delivering some really great, fun, creative activities during February for young people aged 11-25, from photography and film making to theatre, dance and Henna painting! There’s something for everyone!  The programme will run over 6-8 week period. Below are the activities for week one.

Monday 1 February

Film Making 4:30pm-6pm

Urban Fusion (Over 16’s) 6:30pm-7pm

Tuesday 2 February

The Art Room (Over 16) 4:30pm-5:30pm

Urban Fusion (11-16 year olds) 6pm-7pm

Wednesday 3 February

Photography (11-16 year olds) 4:30pm-5:30pm

Photography (over 16) 5:45pm-6:45pm

Urban Fusion Dance (over 16) 6:30pm-7:30pm

Thursday 4 February

Creative Hub (11-16 year olds) 4:30pm-5:30pm

Quiz night (Over 16) 7pm-8pm

Friday 5 February

Open Mic (11-15 year olds) 5pm-6pm

Open Mic (16+) 6pm – 7pm

Saturday 6 Feb

Gather and Grow (11-16 year olds) 10am-11am

Youth theatre (11-16 Year olds) 11am-12noon

Henna Hand Painting (17-25 year olds) 1pm-2:30pm

Sunday 7 February

Youth Theatre (17-25 year olds) 11am-12noon

To sign up for any of the sessions email or call 07957 683696. Follow (5) St Thomas’s Community Association (Sledmere Centre) | Facebook for more information!

Using Xbox and PlayStation to access remote learning

If your child doesn’t have access to a laptop you can also use Xbox or PlayStation to access your schools Home Working Base. An alternative method of accessing remote learning during times of lockdown


1 Plug a keyboard in to the Xbox USB slot

2 Go to my games and apps

3 Find Microsoft Edge and select

4 Type in HWB and log in as you would in school

5 you can then access your work through google classroom or OneDrive and use key packages including – word, Teams, Excel, PowerPoint, Your emails

6 to move around you use the Xbox control or plug in a mouse


1 Identify the playstation internet browser icon (its the WWW with dots around it)

2 Press the PlayStation logo on the controller

3 Go to the library and find options for games and applications

4 Go in to applications and you will find the internet browser

5 Type Hwb into the browser and log in as you would in school

6 You can then access your work through google classroom or OneDrive and use key packages including – word, Teams, Excel, PowerPoint, Your emails

You may also be able to increase data allowances on mobile devices for children click here to find out more

While staying at home due to coronavirus, parents and carers may be worried about their children’s development and the effect of missing school or nursery.

No one expects parents to act as teachers, or to provide the activities and feedback that a school or nursery would. Parents and carers should do their best to help children and support their learning while dealing with other demands.

Get specific advice on how education can continue at home for children here

Food and Fuel Support for families

There is lots of help and support available to help families in crisis who have no access to fuel or food over the next six weeks. Here are just a few things that may help.

Families on low income who are entitled to free school meals will receive £30 vouchers per child directly from school.  If you have a technical issue regarding the vouchers you should contact the number of the voucher company or speak to your school.

Families who are not in receipt of benefit but who find themselves in crisis as a result of furlough or zero hours contracts etc. should contact their local family centres who have a system in place to assess personal circumstances.

Dudley North Family Centre, Bayer St, Coseley, Bilston WV14 9DS 01384 813096

Dudley Central Family Centre, Selborne Road, DY2 8LJ 01384 812 440

Brierley Hill Family Centre, Parkes Street, DY5 3DY 01384 813322

Stourbridge Family Centre, Forge Road, DY8 1XF 01384 818780

Halesowen Family Centre, Lye By-Pass, DY9 8HT 01384 813954

If a family irrelevant of whether they receive benefits or not have metered fuel and cannot afford to top it up over Christmas they should call the Winter Warmth Team on 01384 817086

Families who are having difficulty paying fuel bills should contact

Organisations that can help families in crisis.

Black Country Foodbank will be open for emergencies over the Christmas period. Visit to find the nearest places you can collect foodbank parcels from or call 01384 671250 to talk to someone who can help.

Asda Café Kids meals for free throughout December – Please follow this link to find out more

St Thomas’s Community Association have set up a new foodbank at the Sledmere Community Centre. If you are struggling financially and require a food parcel you can collect one in person from the foodbank at; Sledmere Community Centre, The School Drive (off Buffery Road), Dudley, DY2 8EH.

The opening times are every Wednesday from 5pm – 7pm and Sundays from 11am -1.00pm. It will also be open over the Chirstmas period.

If you are unable to leave the house or collect in person the foodbank can arrange delivery, where prior notice is given. Please email or call 07957 683696

Heaven’s Kitchen Based in the The Lighthouse Centre, Salop Street, Dudley, DY1 3AT provide a three course meal every Monday evening at 7pm and a cooked breakfast every Saturday morning from 10:00am call for more information 01384 239222

Champions Church, Netherton provide a hot food delivery service for those in need every Tuesday at 7pm contact or call 01384 242455

High Oak Youth and Community Centre run a community kitchen project that feed families in need on a Wednesday 10-2pm. They are based at 34 High Oak, Pensnett, Dudley, Brierley Hill DY5 4LA call 07982 428831 for more information.

Gather Dudley CIC based in the Churchill Shopping Centre, run a pay it forward scheme Monday to Saturday. If you are struggling to feed your family you can use the scheme. They also run a fair share food scheme on a Saturday morning where people can take away surplus free food that’s available. Visit or call 07375 084536 to find out more.

Black Country Well Being Centre based in Vale Street, Upper Gornal, DY3 3XF are providing hot meals for people in need on Thursdays and Fridays. They also run a foodbank on a Saturday Visit or call 07501 827334

Life Central Church, Owen House, Little Cornbow, Halesowen, B63 3AJ provide Fortnightly hot meals for families in Crisis contact 0121 501 3542 for more information

Harry’s café part of Top Church Training in Brierley Hill can help support families in crisis visit Top Church Training Brierley Hill | Facebook for more information

Emergency Contacts

Children’s and adult care services emergency duty team 0300 555 8574

Emergency housing repairs 0300 555 8283

Callpay 0300 555 7000

Dudley Council plus 0300 555 2345

For further details follow this link