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Keeping warm over the winter months can help prevent colds, flu or more serious health conditions such as heart attacks, strokes, pneumonia and depression.

Well, it is easy to tell we are in Winter! The temperature has definitely dropped and out come the hats, scarves and gloves! The Healthwatch Calderdale team wants you all to keep warm this winter and has information about the Safe and Warm project on page 12. As the celebrations are about to begin, make sure you have a look at the tips to keep safe during the festivities on page 16. A big thank you to Halifax Street Angels for all the advice! Hope you all have a wonderful time filled with mince pies, presents and tinsel! Not forgetting, have a happy new year!

Emma Worsley, The Calderdale Voice Editor

Every 36 hours the lining of a human’s stomach is replaced.

Healthwatch is the new Consumer Champion, or Watchdog, for health and social care. The aim of local Healthwatch will be to give citizens and communities a stronger voice to influence and challenge how health and social care services are provided locally. Healthwatch Calderdale is an independent body that will raise your views and opinions on Health & Social Care in Calderdale and to help make your voices heard. What we aim to: Enable local voices to influence the delivery and design of local health and social care services Use local volunteers to gather views and information from local people and communities Involve and engage local people, putting you at the heart of Health and Social Care service decision making Enable local people to make informed choices about their own and family’s health and social care needs Influence the way services are designed and delivered Have a strong relationship with Health and Social Care providers as a critical friend using community views to influence and improve planning and delivery of services Provide information, advice and support about local health and social care services Refer people to make a complaint via the Advocacy Service

Ten inches of snow melts down to one inch of water.

Healthwatch Calderdale is a Health and Social Care watchdog. We want to hear from local residents about their experiences, concerns, praises of Calderdale Health and Social Care services. The feedback we receive from local residents allows us to understand where the issues are from the people that use the services. Your views will help us identify areas that need to be looked into. Please get in touch by calling 01422 431099 or you can email us on

The Healthwatch Calderdale Programme Board is made up of 11 individuals from all over Calderdale. The Board operate along the same lines as a management committee/ Board of Trustees of a not-for-profit organisation. It has a specific budget to spend and monitor and will also be required to develop and monitor a work plan for Healthwatch Calderdale. The Healthwatch Calderdale Programme Board meet once a month and their meetings are open to the public. The next meeting is:

Monday 13th January Venue TBC (Central Halifax) Teas and Coffees from 5.30pm for a 6pm start If you would like to attend the Programme Board meeting, please email to be kept up to date of the venue:

Fingernails grow almost four times as fast as toenails

Healthwatch Calderdale is recruiting volunteers to undertake Enter and View visits. Enter and View Representatives can visit certain health and social care service settings to see how they are run, and to gather feedback and highlight best practice. Healthwatch Calderdale is a membership organisation. We make sure that all our members are kept up to date with everything related to Health and Social Care at both a local and national level. Becoming a member is free of charge and is open to anyone who lives in Calderdale and/or receives substantial health and social care services from any provider within Calderdale. It is also open to voluntary and community groups who supports users of health and social care services. To become a member, please email

Enter & View is about promoting and supporting the involvement of people in the commissioning and provision of local health and social care services and how they are scrutinized. Enter and View Visitors will have specialised skills to bring to this role. Healthwatch Calderdale will be running Enter & View training on Tuesday 21st January 2014 9.30am - 4pm. For more information or to register your interest in becoming an E&V volunteer, please email

Every day, your heart will beat around 100,000 times.

The Healthwatch Calderdale website offers a number of different services: Send us your feedback using the ‘Talk to Us’ page Sign up to be a member of Healthwatch Calderdale Find out about our volunteering opportunities Search for local Health & Social Care services Keep up to date with news from Healthwatch Find out where your nearest Healthwatch drop in session is Watch videos from Healthwatch England See our Healthwatch Calderdale Twitter feed Read the Healthwatch Calderdale Pledge Find out about Healthwatch Calderdale local meetings Twitter Facebook

@hwcalderdale Healthwatch Calderdale

The brain operates on about the same amount of power needed to light a 10-watt light bulb!

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Choice is a Supported Volunteering Project which aims to help people who would like to volunteer but may need extra support to do so. Anyone with additional support needs who feels unable to volunteer independently can use the service. Purple Patch Arts exists to improve the lives and life chances of people with learning disabilities. Their Feel Good Workshops feature gentle exercise delivered at a level which suits the individuals that attend, alongside art activity which promotes relaxation, positive thinking and self reflection. All workshops are lead by movement therapists and trained workshop leaders. Purple Patch Art’s Halifax workshops take place on Tuesday at the Orangebox, Thomas Street. Joining Purple Patch Arts is very easy. All you need to do is get in touch by phoning 07725 041 801 or emailing:

Choice involves, encourages and supports volunteers to take full advantage of the volunteering opportunities available whilst promoting equality and diversity. The Choice Supported Volunteering Project supports volunteers and is committed to removing barriers and making volunteering accessible to people of all abilities and backgrounds. The project can help individuals with additional support needs find a suitable opportunity, contact the organisations, filling in forms and travel arrangements. Choice can provide a support assistant to support and befriend a new volunteer. To find out more please ring 01422 438727 or email

Many parents are all too aware of that feeling that comes with caring for young children of never having a moment to yourself and how it can sometimes be overwhelming coping with the demands of parenthood.

The five ways to wellbeing are a set of realistic, achievable actions we can incorporate into our day-to-day activities to feel happier and more content with our lives. The five ways include: Connect e.g. Smile at someone Take Notice e.g. Keep a diary Be Active e.g. Join a local gym Keep Learning e.g. Ask questions Give e.g. Hold the door for someone For more information, please email

The Mum Time sessions are an opportunity for mums struggling with the day to day demands of babies and very young children, to come together and have some time for themselves. A free crèche is available for women attending the session, but should book with Healthy Minds prior to the session. Mum Time meets on the 1st and 3rd Wednesday of the month, 1pm - 2.30pm at: The Women Centre, 23 Silver St, Halifax For more information about Mum Time or Healthy Minds, please call 01422 438722 or visit the website:

Calder Valley Club offers modern day care for adults with diverse physical disabilities and stroke survivors. The centre has wonderful home cooked food with an extensive choice of menu and a unique social setting. Calder Valley Club covers the entire Calderdale area. This support group is for Asian women only and is organised by Calderdale Carers Project. You can come along to meet other carers, to make friends and find people to talk to, to share information and experiences. The group gives you a chance to relax and a break from caring. There is also a bilingual translator available at the group. The group meets at Calderdale Carers Project at Rimani House, Hall Street Halifax on the 3rd Tuesday of every month. The next meeting is December 17th. For more information, please ring 01422 369101 or email:

Calder Valley Club offers an exciting package of activities including Seaside visits, trips to markets (Bury is a favourite), trips on a wheelchair accessible barge, restaurant and shopping trips to name a few! In the Calder Valley Club centre, holistic therapy treatments are now available in the brand new therapy room. Reiki, Indian Head Massage, Reflexology, Manicures and Hair Dressing are just an example of what is on offer. If you would like to find out more, please ring on 01422 885098 or email:

The Campaign to End Loneliness aims to maintain and create connections in older age and combat loneliness. They are asking people to reach out to older neighbours or family who might be isolated or lonely over Christmas High Five is a community group based in Pellon, Halifax. They have been going for three years and run a programme of fun and healthy activities throughout the week. All are welcome to come and join in. You’ll make new friends, try new things, get fitter and most importantly of all, have fun! Activities include Gentle Exercise Classes, Tai Chi, Indoor Kurling and many more! To find out more, please visit the website

Loneliness is a bigger problem than simply an emotional experience. Research shows that loneliness and social isolation are harmful to our health. Laura Ferguson, Director of the Campaign to End Loneliness said: “Keeping in touch with older neighbours and family could help them overcome the extra emotional pressures of Christmas. Memories of past friends and Christmases can make the festive season particularly painful for older people who are isolated and lonely. Simply sending a Christmas card, giving a gift to or spending time with an older neighbour or family member might help lift them out of their isolation and loneliness.” For more information, please visit

Singing for the Brain is a programme developed by Alzheimer’s Society for people with memory problems. The programme promotes communication through singing which can help with articulation, concentration & motivation. Facilitators deliver a varied programme of vocal, rhythmic and gentle exercise and dance, along with songs from different eras and styles which are chosen by the people who attend the group. The sessions are now in Halifax, Hebden Bridge and Rastrick. The new singing groups are added to a programme of dementia cafes, living with dementia groups and carers groups which currently take place in Calderdale. To find out more about Singing for the Brain please ring 01422 352789 or visit

Halifax Street Angels was set up in November 2005. The Street Angels team dedicate their time to supporting and caring for those who have become vulnerable at night, and promoting safety in Halifax Town Centre. Within their 1st year, there was a 42% decrease in violent crimes in Halifax on a Friday and Saturday night. Halifax Street Angels have received several awards, including local Charity of the Year 2012, Big Society Award 2012. With the help of the Street Angels team, Halifax received the Purple Flag Award and is now recognised as a clean and safe place for people to come and enjoy the nightlife. Street Angels also offer HxSA:Training which aims to provide low cost but high quality first aid training to businesses, charities and organisations locally and nationally. Check out the Street Angel’s tips for keeping safe this Christmas on page 16. For more information, please visit

Dimensions, an organisation supporting services for people with Autism, offer Autism friendly film screenings at cinemas across the UK.

Safe and Warm is designed to protect vulnerable people from the effects of sever winter weather due to cold housing and reduce the number of deaths over winter by providing items like electric blankets, portable heating and clothing. In this instance, vulnerable individuals and communities are defined as "those with limited means and elderly, disabled, households with children under 5 or vulnerably housed". The Safe and Warm project is by referral only and a list of referring agents is available on the website:

Autism Friendly Screenings are mainstream films shown in a sensory friendly environment: Lights are on low Sound is turned down Trailers are not shown People can bring their own food, make noise and move around the cinema as they feel comfortable. VUE Cinema at Broad Street Plaza, Halifax, have an Autism friendly screening on the last Sunday of the month. Entrance into the film is ÂŁ1.75 each and carers accompanying people have free entry. The next screening is: Rise of the Guardians Sunday 29th December 2013 10am

A hair-raising charity campaign is getting hundreds of people across the country to grow beards this December. Decembeard is now in its third year, all in aid of the charity Beating Bowel Cancer.

January is Love Your Liver Month. Every January the Love Your Liver campaign embarks on a national tour of the UK, offering pop-up liver health clinics to get your liver health assessed. The aim is to get the nation taking Three Simple Steps to good liver health: 1) Take 2-3 days off alcohol every week and drink safely when you do 2) Cut down on sugary and fatty foods 3) Get regular exercise

Decembeard is encouraging people to become a ‘Beardy’ to help increase awareness of bowel cancer and break down the stigma of talking about the disease. This Decembeard, the charity wants to sign up more than 1,000 people with the aim of raising £145,000. Men can grow their facial furniture for the month to raise funds and vital awareness for the UK’s second biggest cancer killer. Over a hundred people are diagnosed with bowel cancer every day, yet over 90% of cases can be treated successfully if caught early.

The Love your Liver Roadshow will be at: Thursday 16th January 10am - 4pm Morrison Supermarket, Hunslet Store, Leeds LS10 2AP

It’s not just men getting involved with the campaign, women and the follicallychallenged can join in too by making, faking, crafting or baking a beard.

For more information, please visit:

To take part in Decembeard, please visit

Stress is an issue which affects us all at one time or another, but January can be a time when the strains of Christmas and the pressures of New Year’s resolutions intensify its symptoms. That's why, the Mental Health Foundation launched a campaign to help everyone cope better with the physical and emotional effects of stress around the New Year. Their pocket guide has key facts and 101 tips to help reduce the symptoms, sourced from mental health professionals as well as the general public. The booklet ‘How to manage and reduce stress’ is available to download on the Mental Health Foundation website:

While the nation writes their Christmas lists and wait with anticipation at what Santa might bring, there are many people who can’t wait. Their must-have gift is something far more vital than the latest gadget or toy – it’s blood. NHS Blood and Transplant is calling for people to step forward and donate so patients whose lives depend on blood or platelet transfusions get what they need over the festive period. From now until the New Year is typically a challenging time for blood stocks. Hospitals will need up to half a million units of blood to see them through the period. However, the festive season means taking the time to donate can slip off people’s to-do list, putting pressure on blood stocks. Claire, who’s daughter has Sickle Cell Anaemia said: ‘You wouldn’t forget to get your kids or members of your family a present so please don’t forget to donate blood.’ If you’re 17 and over and in general good health, visit or call 0300 123 23 23 to find a session in England or North Wales near you to go and give blood.

December and January are a big part of our social Calendar. The festive season includes Work Parties, Mulled Wine and Celebrating a New Year. We can all overindulge at this time of year and Street Angels have a few tips on how to keep safe when you are out celebrating. Keeping Safe during the Festive Season

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Plenty sense. Plenty water. Plenty friends. Never leave your drinks around. Always stay with your friends, don’t go off alone, have their contact information on you somewhere other than your phone. Always eat before a night out – never drink on an empty stomach. Know your drink and know your limit. Know what you are drinking so you know how much you have had. Keep your taxi money in another part of your handbag/wallet so you don’t spend it. Always sit in the back of a taxi if you’re travelling by yourself. Pick a venue right for you – if you feel out of place, leave! Most fights start over something minor – someone might knock you, spill your drink – apologise! Don’t get involved in breaking up a fight – that’s the job of the door-staff! Halifax Street Angels are on hand from 9pm-3am Friday and Saturdays nights to help. They can be found either out on the streets or at the Angels rest café on Crossley Street (next to the YMCA). The café is open for you! Don’t hesitate to drop by if you need to get home, some basic first aid or just a warm/safe place to wait for a taxi come along. ‘Have a safe and Merry Christmas!’ – From everyone at Halifax Street Angels.

Chionophobia is a fear of snow. If you are out celebrating this Winter, make sure you wrap up warm!

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The Calderdale Voice Issue 2 Dec - Jan 2013  

Healthwatch, Calderdale, Health, Social Care

The Calderdale Voice Issue 2 Dec - Jan 2013  

Healthwatch, Calderdale, Health, Social Care