Village Agent's March Newsletter

Do you have one hour per week to spare?

Are you caring, patient and a good listener? Would you like to help a member of the older population in your community? Age Concern Forest will match you with someone local who needs some support and friendship. It may be just to have a chat and a coffee, do a bit of light shopping or perhaps help them get back on their feet after returning home from hospital. The idea is to combat loneliness and isolation and offer a little help where needed. We offer full support, along with regular opportunities to meet with fellow volunteers - who knows, you may make good friends yourself along the way. If you are interested or would like further information, please telephone 01594 845621 and leave a message for Dawn Snow.

Computer Books in Plain English

Thank you to a Silver Surfer for recommending the following two books: "Help! My Taskbar's Vanished" and "The Internet One Step at a Time". Both are written by Tim Wakeling and published by The Helpful Book Company. They cover aspects of computer use which the new or amateur user is likely to encounter and the information is written in everyday English.

Waiting Times at A&E (Casualty)

The Forest Health Forum ( has just been updated with links to a live web link which gives patients a list of current waiting times for the Emergency Departments at Gloucestershire Royal and Cheltenham General Hospitals as well as the Minor Injuries Units at the Dilke and Lydney Hospitals. The times are updated every half hour.

"Forest Signpost: A Guide to Services for Older and Disabled People in the Forest of Dean", which was updated in November 2012, can also be accessed from the website.

NHS Direct Telephone Service

If you need health information or reassurance about what to do next, the NHS Direct Telephone Service is available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. The number is: 0845 4647. You will be asked to provide some basic information, including details of any medication you may be taking. If you're feeling unwell at the time of your call, you may be told how you can look after yourself at home, or you may be recommended to see a chemist. If it's something more serious, you may be advised to see another health professional, such as your doctor. If the problem is very serious, the service can help you to access the ambulance service.

Yes to Life Cancer Support

A charity called Yes to Life offers support and information on building an integrative programme for cancer. It has all sorts of really useful information for people who want to look at additional resources to those offered by mainstream services. They are in the process of adding to their Directory, a list of national (and international) counsellors who have experience working therapeutically with people affected by cancer.

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