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FIS Newsletter - May Half Term 2024

FIS Newsletter - May Half Term 2024

Welcome to our newsletter for May Half Term 2024, combining MyFIS and MyFIS+ which we hope you'll find interesting and helpful.

In this edition we’ve got lots of interesting news about:

Don't forget that if you would like more information about anything in this newsletter or anything to do with family life, then get in touch with the York Family Information Service, telehopne: 01904 554444, or by emailing: [email protected].

FIS Newsletter

Recent newsletters

Read our other Family Information Service (FIS) newsletters covering useful information on family life, and being a parent or carer in York.


What's on in May Half Term

There's lots of events and activities taking place this Half Term, and throughout the spring, for families, children and young people in York.

Here's some examples:

  • Family Hubs - Come and join us this half term at Hob Moor, Clifton and The Avenues Children's Centres for a free Hoglets activity - our usual free weekly activities including a hot drink and the option of picking up and asking for information about services, groups, childcare and anything else to do with family life, are available as usual; view the Family Hubs timetable.
  • Events, activities and things to do - Visit Raise York's Whats On page for a list of local activities and things to do taking place in York; view Raise York What's On.

York Festival of Ideas

York Festival of Ideas - logo

Enjoy a host of free family events at York Festival of Ideas. The event takes places 1 to 14 June 2024.

There's lots on offer including:

  • Discovery Zone
  • When Smartphones and Nature Meet
  • Exploring Science Through Art
  • Festival Fringe Family Fun Afternoon
  • The Little Vikings 'I Spy' Trail

Plus, explore a magical world built by fairies, hunt for medieval masons' marks, play games and discover facts about the human brain - and much, much more!

Don't Miss: War Horse: The concert with acclaimed children's author Michael Morpurgo.


Volunteer at Family Hubs

We're looking for Parent Champions to volunteer in our Family Hub Drop-ins. Do you have 1 to 2 hours (or more) spare a week? We'd love to hear from you!

Full training and ongoing support will be provided.

If you're interested to find out more email: [email protected] or [email protected].


The fake exam scam

Information from North Yorkshire Community Messaging:

Social media scammers are charging pupils hundreds of pounds for what they claim are leaked GCSE and A-level exam papers, but are likely to be fakes or non-existent.

The risks to students are high, with not only the loss of money but the possibility of downloading malicious malware, as well as the possibility of being disqualified.

Sir Ian Bauckham, chief regulator at Ofqual, stated: "Students should also be aware of the risks of exam papers on social media. Accounts claiming to sell this year's exam papers are almost always scams. Students should report these accounts to teachers. Students risk losing the qualification they've been studying for if they search for or communicate with social media accounts claiming to sell leaked exam papers. Sanctions can still apply even if the papers turn out to be fake. Buying papers is never worth the risk."

How to recognise and report emails, texts, websites, adverts or phone calls that you think are trying to scam you.

'Phishing' is when criminals use scam emails, text messages or phone calls to trick their victims. The aim is often to make you visit a website, which may download a virus onto your computer, or steal bank details or other personal information.

The National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) is a UK government organisation that has the power to investigate and take down scam email addresses and websites.

Reporting a scam is free and only takes a minute.

  • Report an email you think is a scam - If you have received an email which you’re not quite sure about, forward it to [email protected].
  • Report a text message you think is a scam - Most phone providers are part of a scheme that allows customers to report suspicious text messages for free by forwarding it to 7726; if you forward a text to 7726, your provider can investigate the origin of the text and arrange to block or ban the sender, if it’s found to be malicious.
  • Report a website you think is a scam - Many scammers operate fake websites, which will download viruses to your computer, or are designed to steal passwords or other personal information; report a suspicious website or link.
  • Report an advert you think is a scam - If you see a suspicious ad in a paid-for space, you can report it to the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA), including adverts on social media; report an online scam.

Look, Say, Sing, Play

Did you know there are free, Look, Say, Sing, Play, 'stay and play' sessions held at The Place (formerly Sanderson House) every week?

These sessions are aimed at families, who live in the Westfield area of York, with children aged 0 to 2 years, and you can enjoy playing with a selection of toys with your children on Tuesdays between 10.00am and 11:30am

Come along and drop in, no need to book!

Get more info about Look, Say, Sing, Play at The Place.


Financial support for households

See what support is available to help with the cost of living and save money with our energy saving tips... You'll find information on the National Insurance cut, how to save energy and lower your bills, support with mortgage costs, travel and more; see Government’s Help for Households.

CYC Food and Fuel Voucher Scheme

Households can receive a maximum of 1 standard food award and a maximum of 1 standard fuel award from City of York Council's Food and Fuel Voucher Scheme from Monday 1 April 2024 to Monday 31 March 2025. This is in addition to vouchers received in previous years. Applications for food and fuel vouchers are treated separately.

Household Support Fund

The government announced on 6 March 2024 that the Household Support Fund (HSF) has been extended for 6 months.

York's 'Household Support Fund (HSF) 5' is provided by City of York Council to support households in most need of support to help with significantly rising living costs. Anyone who requires assistance with food, energy or water bills and who is not receiving Council Tax Support or is over pension age will be able to apply through the discretionary application route.

All applications to the 'discretionary route' will be through a means tested assessment which will require you to prepare some financial information. You may also be able to apply for exceptional financial circumstances relating to other essentials which will be assessed on a discretionary basis.

Any exceptional discretionary awards will be made on an individual basis as appropriate. The discretionary 'HSF 5' closes at midnight on Friday 30 Sept 2024.


Help with the cost of childcare

Childcare choices that fits with your family

If you're a parent of children aged 9 to 23 months, you may be able to get help with the costs of childcare.

You can apply for 15 hours of childcare now if you're a working family.

If you would like a list of Ofsted registered childcare in your local area contact the FIS on telephone: 01904 554444 or email: [email protected].

For more information about help with the cost of childcare visit Childcare Choices.


Separated parents app

OnePlusOne have launched a new app called 'Separating Better. The app offers emotional advice, practical tips and free resources for parents starting their separation journey.


City of York Council's corporate improvement consultation

City of York Council (CYC) are committed to listening to residents, community groups, partner organisations, and businesses; they want to ensure your feedback shapes the decisions that affect our community.

You're invited to share your valuable feedback about the council's Corporate Improvement Framework by completing the Corporate Improvement Consultation.


Cases of Whooping Cough on the rise

Whooping cough cases are rising in England.

If you are pregnant, it's important to get the whooping cough vaccine to protect your newborn baby, as they're at greatest risk.

Get advice on whooping cough vaccination from the NHS.


Feedback on Speech and Language Therapy helpline

If you've used the York and Scarborough Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust Speech and Language Therapy ‘Request for Help’ telephone line recently we'd be grateful for any feedback you're able to provide.

We want to know about your experience using these telephone calls to support us with improving our service. Please complete the 5 question survey about 'Request for Help'. ;


A new way to get in touch with the police

PoliceUK is a new policing app that has recently launched so you can access a range of services online, in the same way you would if you called 101.

As well as reporting crimes and incidents you can use the app to find information about local policing teams, access prevention advice, and find support if your a victims or witnesses of crime.

The PoliceUK app is available via the Google Play and iOS app stores.

Remember, if it is an emergency, you should always call 999.


Healthy Start Scheme

Healthy start

Don’t miss out on your free Healthy Start Scheme.

Healthy Start can help you to buy milk, fruit and vegetables and infant formula. If you’re eligible, you’ll be sent a Healthy Start card with money on it that you can use in some UK shops. You can also get free vitamins!

If you are pregnant or have children under the age of 4 years, you could qualify if you're on benefits or under 18 and pregnant.

To find out more information about the scheme, including how to apply, visit Healthy Start Scheme or telephone: 0300 330 7010.


Free webinars for parents and carers

There are still opportunities for parents and carer of children in York to access free online webinars provided by the ADHD Foundation, as part of York’s Neurodiversity Programme.

The sessions are 90 minute and tailored to parents or carers of children in York schools and settings. They cover:

  • ADHD
  • emotional regulation
  • sensory integration
  • diet/nutrition
  • child development (age 7 and under).

These sessions will be repeated at various time throughout the summer and autumn terms - the full list of sessions, dates and times are available from Raise York; parents and carers just need to click their chosen session to be taken to the booking platform (Zoom).

If you have any questions about the sessions, please email: [email protected].


Educational Psychology Support Line

Have a question or concern about your child’s wellbeing or learning? The Educational Psychology Support Line is available during term time providing a confidential telephone service staffed by Educational Psychologists.

Open to all parents/carers of children with additional needs or SEND living in the City of York or attend an educational setting in York (who have not had recent Educational Psychology involvement).

Calls of up to 30 minutes are available on Wednesday mornings 9.30am to 11.30am. To book a slot email: [email protected] with your name and contact telephone number. You will be contacted the following Tuesday with a time slot. Bookings closed each week at 5.00pm.


Don't keep us a secret!

Don't forget to tell your friends and family about York Family Information Service! If you use Twitter or Facebook you can follow York Family Information Service online:


Register with the Information Service

Is your child under 3? By registering with our Information Service you'll receive tailored information (on an adhoc basis) about:

  • groups and activities
  • 2 year-old funding
  • opportunities to take part in research specific to the age of your child

Register with the Information Service.


Feedback on the service you've received

If you have any suggestions or comments about our newsletter and the types of articles featured, or you've been in touch with us, we'd like to hear from you!

Your feedback helps us to know how effective we are, and how we can improve; provide your feedback.

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