Community News

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    Community News – Covid Transport

    Somerset County Council is joining forces with transport providers to help vulnerable residents get to their Covid vaccination appointments. There are now more than 20 vaccination sites across Somerset including community-based locations, hospital hubs and large vaccination centres. In Yeovil, the vaccination sites are at the Gateway in Addlewell Lane and at Morrisons supermarket car park on Lysander Road. While many older and more vulnerable people will be able to attend a location close to their home, some will be relying on public transport. Somerset County Council is working with bus operators and community transport providers to make it as easy as possible for those people to get to appointments by suspending current concessionary bus pass rules so these can be used on all public services before 9.30 am and by working with Community Transport providers to allow free travel for bus pass holders when attending vaccination appointments.

    Programme Director for the Somerset Vaccination Programme, Karen Prosser, says it’s very important that people come forward for a vaccination when they are invited and that the special transport measures have been put in place to support this further. 

    If you have not yet had your vaccination, it might be worth preparing in advance how you will get there. If you aren’t able to drive yourself, but you have a family member or friend who might be able to support you, it’s always worth having that conversation now. If you are concerned about accessing an appointment, call the Somerset Coronavirus helpline on 0300 790 6275

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    Community News - Stepping Stones Fostering

    More homes are urgently needed in the Yeovil and South Somerset area to provide vital support to young people as they move from care into adulthood. Somerset County Council is highlighting the need to recruit more ‘Stepping Stones’ placements. Stepping Stones carers support young people leaving care as they make the transition to independent living. This involves helping them gain crucial life skills such as managing bills, cooking, shopping, accessing further education and employment opportunities, whilst providing a safe place for them to stay. As a ‘Stepping Stones’ provider, you need to be aged 23 or over, have a spare room in your home, and ideally live in a town with good transport links and amenities. In return, you will receive a weekly fee, starting at £185 per week, plus a little extra for food and utilities. Stepping Stones placements are relatively short; anything from a few months to a couple of years. There is no upper age limit and people from all backgrounds and ethnicities, those who are single, LGBT, renting, or if they have children of their own already can apply. For more information visit  www.fosteringinsomerset.org.uk or call 0800 587 9900.

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    Community News – Bruton Enterprise Centre

    Business in Bruton is set for a boost with work beginning on a new £2.7m Enterprise Centre at Coombe Hill. The centre will be home to 10 new offices, two meeting rooms and seven 50 square metre industrial units. The site will also have car parking (including electric), a bike lock-up, and a small kitchen in the office building. Somerset’s Enterprise Centres, of which there are eight in Somerset, are specially designed to accommodate rural businesses by offering flexible tenancies, superfast broadband and competitive rents, as well as access to business support and networking. They provide ‘easy in’ and ‘easy out’ terms to make it as straightforward and low risk as possible for businesses to access and aim to encourage suitable businesses to take their next step. Cabinet Member for Economic Development at Somerset County Council, Councillor David Hall says the County Council is determined not only to support businesses through the pandemic but to continue planning for the future by investing in projects such as the Bruton Enterprise Centre, that offer opportunities for growth for years to come. The Bruton centre is backed with an £800,000 grant from the government’s ‘Getting Building Fund’. For more information visit www.somerset-enterprise-centres.co.uk 

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    Community News – Abuse

    Young people experiencing relationships that cause them to feel scared, controlled or who are harmed, can find local help through the Safer Somerset Partnership. For many, experiences of domestic abuse begin in the childhood home and it’s estimated that 1 in 5 children are exposed to domestic abuse. This means that for many young people, their experience of domestic violence does not begin in their own relationships but in the childhood home, from witnessing adult relatives in abusive relationships. According to the Safe Lives report “Safe Young Lives” 6.6% of men and 12.6% of women aged 16 to 19 have experienced domestic abuse in the past year. In Somerset, the number of 16 to 17-year-olds receiving support through the Domestic Abuse Service has increased significantly indicating the need to address teenage abuse and unhealthy relationship. Cabinet Member for Public Health and Well-Being at Somerset County Council Cllr Clare Paul, says young people can experience all forms of domestic abuse and the likelihood of experiencing high severity abuse is no different to adults. Domestic abuse, be it physical, psychological or coercive is wrong. If someone is hurting you or making you do something you don’t want to, contact the website  www.somersetsurvivors.org.uk  or call 0800 694 9999

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