Due to the Coronavirus and following government advice, all the team are now working from home therefore, in the first instance please contact Liz on mobile 07395 909073 or go to our Facebook page for further updates.
Families come to us usually after a traumatic event such as bereavement, diagnosis of a terminal illness or the breakdown of a marital relationship. We provide ongoing support for the children until the family is again self-sufficient or until the children have left full time education. All the families we help are on a means tested benefit which ensures we only help those in most need.
The Society is funded via donations, legacies, local fundraising events, trusts and grants such as Seafarers UK, Royal Navy and Royal Marines Charity and Trinity House. In these uncertain economic times the funding we receive from our major funders and Trusts is extremely important to us. Without this funding we would struggle to help all of our existing families and also seafaring families in the future.
The Society incorporates these Values:
· We believe that everyone has a right to live free from abuse, exploitation, harm and fear and to enjoy being safe and well.
· Safeguarding starts at board level and is embedded into all Society activities (Charity Commission guidance issued this year).
· We achieve this by providing trustees and staff with ongoing training, promoting parental education with the provision of NSPCC leaflets, facebook postings and have a robust safeguarding policy which is reviewed and updated regularly.
Please click on the link for our Statement of purpose March 2019 Safeguarding policy and our Child Protection Policy 2019.
· We believe all our contacts both internally and externally should be treated on an unbiased and fair basis.
· All staff undergo continued professional development and training in equality.
· The Society has an Equality Policy in place which is reviewed and updated regularly.
· Staff, trustees and volunteers act with professionalism and dignity at all times.
· Continued professional development and training is provided as appropriate.
· As a children’s charity we show compassion and empathy to the situations the families we help are faced with.
· All team members talk to families on a daily basis and training is provided as appropriate.
· All team members receive regular supervision which provides a safe environment for critical reflection, challenge and professional support.
· The Society strives to work with partners for the benefit of the families supported.
· We aim to increase collaboration with others in the future to reduce costs wherever possible and increase the support given to those in need.
Sailors’ Children’s Society is working in partnership with the Big White Wall which is a free confidential online mental health and well-being service offering self-help programmes, creative outlets and a community that cares. When you’re dealing with everyday stresses or major life events, we’ll help you get through it.
Mental health problems can affect anyone at any time. As part of World Mental Health Day on Thursday 10th October 2019, we thought we would embrace the day and encourage everyone to start looking after their own mental health and well-being. Just like we care for our physical health, our mental health may need some tender loving care at the best of times too.
With this in mind we would like to highlight the Big White Wall (BWW). The Big White Wall is an online interactive site that allows you to connect with others who may be experiencing similar issues whilst gaining support and advice from clinically trained professionals too. The site is safe, anonymous and available 24 hours a day each and every day.
Once you have registered as a member, whether as a Royal Navy veteran, Merchant Navy veteran or Fishing Fleet veteran, you are then able to join in online chats or access guided support through short courses on topics such as:
- coping with grief and loss
- managing stress and anxiety
- eating healthy to feel good.
If you watch the short video clip below you will see one of the Sailors’ Children’s team giving you a friendly demonstration on how to register as a member of the Big White Wall.
We at the Sailors’ Children’s Society are keen to embrace this service and we hope that we have made registering quick and easy:
The types of help we provide is:
Monthly Child Welfare Grants
to be able to continue to go to the various children’s clubs for example judo, karate or clarinet lessons, means that the children are away from this. In the current climate of ever increasing costs of living, these welfare grants are often used to provide heating for the children or a nutritionally balanced meal.
paid twice each year, the first to provide a new school uniform in September. A child spends the majority of his/her time at school and school is generally the main driver for social interaction. A new school uniform to allow each child to be the same as their peers is extremely important to a child’s confidence and self- esteem. The second clothing grant is given to provide a warm winter coat and sturdy shoes, the majority of the families we help do not have a car and travel each day either on foot or by public transport.
a small grant to buy each child a gift at this special time of year, this is a traditional grant at the wishes of our Trustees.
If the child is over the age of 18 and currently supported on the Child Support Scheme, we can continue to provide a welfare grant for either living at home or away from home in order to help with their ongoing studies at University/College.
School Holiday Grants
following a very generous legacy from Dorothy Hoyle, the Society now gives a £10 per child grant to cover the cost of food and heating during the school holidays.
Emergency Heating Grant
during the winter of 2010, we issued emergency heating grants to all our families suffering in the cold. This grant will be repeated should the extreme winter conditions return.
these type of grants are usually given in extreme cases such as furniture for the child’s bedroom and are on a one-off basis.
Caravan Holidays – Travel Grant
the Society owns nine caravans at seaside resorts throughout the United Kingdom. The impact of a holiday to a child is immeasurable from the anticipation of what the holiday will bring to making new friends and trying new activities whilst away. Our holidays allow children to be children for that week away. We also provide a travel grant to help with public transport or fuel costs.
The other types of help we provide is:
Emotional and Practical Support
Regular Emotional Support Visits/Contact
the Society team are extremely experienced in helping families, whether that be simply providing a sympathetic ear or researching and finding more specialist help when needed. We encourage our families to talk to each other and share their experiences and we also have a thriving Facebook community. We provide face-to-face emotional and practical support in families home in the North and South regions when needed, in order for families to move forwards in life.
Annual Visit Updates
each family is visited at least once a year using volunteer caseworkers from organisations such as SSAFA Forces Help, the Royal British Legion and The Royal National Mission of Deep Sea Fishermen. These caseworkers visit alongside our team of Family Support Officers. This means we can provide the most relevant help for each family depending on their own personal circumstances.
PC Package Appeal
following the generous support from some of our major funders, we can continue to distribute a PC package including a printer to each of our families to help with their children’s schoolwork. In order to ensure the priority of these computers, we will always ask if there is a working computer within the home when the family are welcomed onto our support scheme.
School Holiday Vouchers and Pantomime Ticket Appeals
the school holidays are an extremely expensive time of year for our families. In order to help during these times, each year we apply to a large number of local attractions including cinemas, safari parks, bowling alleys, adventure playgrounds and theatre for free family passes.
“I would like to say a massive thank you for all your help and support. We are overwhelmed by the receipt of the computer xx now the boys can do their school work easily xx thank you again”
“Thank you Michelle, me and Sherree are doing ok, it gets a bit boring not being able to do a lot outdoors, but its like that for everyone I guess. You stay safe as well Michelle and thank you for everything your wonderful charity has done for us.x”
“Thank you for the extra grant, I always make my children’s costumes so the extra funds are really helpful. My monkey wanted to be The Phantom of the Opera by Gaston Leroux – my 6 yr old loves musicals and this unbelievably is his favourite, but also loves the Greatest Showman and West Side Story”