Covid-19 update from Bridgend County Borough – 3 June

Laptops donated to children

More than 750 reconditioned laptops and other ICT devices have been provided to school children who do not have access to a home computer in Bridgend County Borough. Part of a Welsh Government-funded initiative to ensure all pupils can benefit from online learning during the pandemic, the scheme has been organised by council ICT staff, Central South Consortium and school network managers. The laptops have been rebuilt using a secure operating system. As part of the initiative, more than 300 homes which did not previously have internet access have also been provided with mobile broadband. This is enabling children to connect to the internet and access digital learning platforms provided by schools as well as Hwb, a collection of online tools and resources which is available to all schools in Wales.

Play areas remain closed

Following the recent changes to lockdown rules in Wales, the council is reminding residents that children’s play areas remain closed until further notice. The play areas have been shut because of the increased risk of hard surfaces being exposed to the coronavirus, and the difficulties of ensuring that young children can observe social distancing and hand hygiene requirements within a confined space. The closure will be reviewed as soon as Welsh Government confirms that it is safe to do so.

Don’t miss your free school meal delivery

Households that are eligible to receive the weekly free school meals food parcel are being reminded that they must be at home to accept a pre-arranged delivery. Each parcel contains enough food to provide a child with breakfast and lunch for a child for five days, and pupils with special dietary requirements can receive a frozen meal option. Around 5,000 food parcels a week are being delivered to support families whose children would otherwise benefit from a free school meal.

Online learning during the pandemic

Bridgend Adult Community Learning is offering a range of free accredited online courses during the pandemic in areas such as tutor-led IT courses, counselling and managing stress. Courses start on Tuesday 16 June, so find out more or enrol today at the council’s community learning page.

Stay alert for scammers

A number of coronavirus-related phishing emails have been reported to Action Fraud. These emails attempt to trick people into opening malicious attachments which could lead to fraudsters stealing your personal information, logins, passwords or banking details. You can find out more about how you can stay alert and protect yourself at the Action Fraud website.

Key worker emergency childcare

The deadline to apply for emergency childcare covering next week expires at 12noon on Wednesday 3 June. You can find out more and submit an application at the council website.

Help prevent ‘no shows’

If you book a place at an emergency childcare hub but no longer require it, please let the council know in advance so that it can be offered to someone else. The hubs are staffed by volunteers, places are limited and each one costs around £50 a day to provide. People who book a place but do not turn up will have the offer of support withdrawn.

Visiting a recycling centre

Anyone who is planning an essential trip to a community recycling centre is reminded to check the ‘odds and evens’ number plate schedule at the council’s recycling page to make sure they are selecting the right day for access, and to take note of the traffic management arrangements for each of the sites.

Social care opportunities

More people are being sought to help support the county borough’s most vulnerable residents. A number of employment opportunities are available, and anyone who has previously worked in social care or who has transferable skills is invited to apply. A fast-tracked application process and rapid refresher training course are available. To apply or find out more, visit the job pages at the council’s website.