Health and wellbeing advice

Do it yourself

Kick-start your health with a range of tools and support available through the NHS Better Health campaign.

Find what works for you

We're working closely with our NHS colleagues to ensure that you have up-to-date information and advice about Coronavirus.

You'll find information here about the virus, how to prevent its spread and what to do if you're concerned that you might be at risk.

The national guidance now states that you should stay at home for 10 days if you have either:

  • a high temperature (37.8C or higher)
  • a new continuous cough

This will help to protect others in your community while you are infectious.

If you think you have symptoms or you might have been exposed to the virus when travelling, visit the NHS 111 online assessment tool. The NHS 111 number is now being targeted at people who have more severe and urgent symptoms.

If you have symptoms, please do not visit your GP, pharmacist, Urgent Care Centre or A&E department, as you may spread the virus to others.

An explanation of COVID-19 is available on an easy read leaflet (PDF).

Useful health information and advice links

Looking after your wellbeing

Staying at home for a long time can be a difficult, frustrating, and you may feel lonely and disconnected from friends and your wider family. It can be particularly challenging if you don’t have much space or access to a garden.

There are lots of things you and your family can try to keep your mind and body active. The charity Mind has some helpful ideas to help you manage.

Help with your mental wellbeing

Many people will be finding staying at home for long periods challenging and difficult. The organisations below can help:

Carers Support Bexley

Offers emotional support, information, advice, signposting, advocacy etc for Carers over the telephone.

Contact details:

Telephone 020 8302 8011
Email info@carerssupport.org
Website Carers' Support (Bexley)

Mind Bexley

Self-help information offers lots of helpful Information for self-care to deal with anxiety and physical health and well-being. Visit Coronavirus and your wellbeing.

Online therapy – online courses to help you manage stress, anxiety and depression. Please see Silver Cloud to apply.

Wellbeing line: For individuals in the borough struggling with their mental health right now.

Open Monday to Friday 9am to 6pm. Call 080 196 3896

The Bexley Crisis Cafe is a safe and friendly place for anybody 18 and over who is experiencing severe emotional or psychological distress. It is a drop-in service where you can access mental health support and advice from mental health workers.

Our aim is to provide a safe, relaxing space where you can speak freely with one of our mental health workers about what is going on for you. We offer support, advice and signpost you to a suitable service for you, to help you feel less isolated or to provide support to learn from a crisis.

We are open from 6pm to 10pm from Monday to Sunday including Bank Holidays.

Recovery College - We are now offering a befriending service, check in calls and a digital timetable with an array of courses and workshops to improve your wellbeing. Please see Bexley Recovery College to register for any of our courses or workshops or to refer into the recovery college.

Food For Thought – this service is for individuals who access a Mind In Bexley service (IAPT, Recovery College, Crisis Café etc). We want to reach out and support people to stay well physically and emotionally during these tough times, therefore, we are allocating a personal allowance of £15 weekly (subject to demand) for people to register for an online food/personal care items delivery. See Food for thought.

Contact details:

Mind in Bexley - 2a Devonshire Road, Bexleyheath DA6 8DS
Telephone 020 8303 8932
Email info@mindinbexley.org.uk
Website Mind in Bexley

We aim to answer calls immediately. If demand is particularly high we will return call on the same day and provide services within 24 hours.

Re-Instate

Operates alongside MIND and offers:

Re-Instate’s Mental Health Employment Team is continuing to provide a comprehensive range of services around employment matters. This includes job retention and mediation with employers, job searching, employability training, preparation for work and access to volunteering opportunities. Initially from Monday September 7 our office will be open at Belvedere community centre on Monday, Wednesday and Friday 9am to 12.30pm and one of the team will be present at these times and will receive clients in a Covid secure environment. The Employment Service operates as part of the Recovery and Well-being Service in conjunction with Mind in Bexley and Mind’s Recovery College. This service is for people with mental health problems to empower them to take control of their recovery.

Re-Instate are offering a range of employability workshops and guidance in a range of employment issues relevant to the current crisis. From 15 September this will include a new Job Club. A full timetable can be found on Re-Instate’s website or through Mind’s Recovery College.

The W-rap project (Well-being Recovery Activity Parcels) provides well-being packs to isolated people offering five full-sized gifts built around the New Economics Foundation’s Five Way’s to Well-being. Packs have been supplied to patients during long-term hospital stays as well as people isolated in their own home, residents of care homes, carers and religious groups. 

Contact details:

Telephone 01322 438155
Email Employment Service info@re-instate.co.uk
Website Re-Instate
Email shart@re-instate.co.uk 

Response time for messages left: within 24 hours, but should be much quicker. Response time for services to be provided: 24 to 48 hours, dependant on service/need.

Alzheimer's Society

Alzheimer’s Society provide a telephone dementia advice and support service and provide welfare calls for people feeling isolated or are concerned about their memory.

Contact details: 

Telephone 01322 524950 or National Dementia Connect Helpline: 0333 150 3456
Email bexleybranch@alzheimers.org.uk
Website Alzheimer's Society 

We aim to respond to your message within 24 to 72 hours and provide a service appropriate to your need. 

We can provide telephone and email support for bereaved people in our local community.

Contact details:

Telephone 020 8304 5245
Email bexleyandbromley@cruse.org.uk
Website Cruse Bereavement Care

We will respond to your message within 24 hours. Needs are assessed and allocated on a priority basis.

Greenwich and Bexley Hospice

Compassionate Neighbours in Greenwich & Bexley is a project which matches trained ‘Compassionate Neighbours’ with people in their community who are lonely/isolated and/or touched by terminal illness or frailty. In normal circumstances, Compassionate Neighbours visit for around an hour a week to offer their companionship, friendship and to help the person remain connected with their own community. During the COVID-19 outbreak we are arranging telephone support relationships - following the same principles but supporting people through isolation. We will aim to maintain support one the pandemic is over.

We are happy to accept/consider self-referrals.

Contact details:

Online form (preferred method of contact)
Telephone 020 8312 2244
Email cn@gbch.org.uk
Website Greenwich & Bexley Community Hospice

We will respond to your message on the same day. We will provide services within 48 hours. Priority is given to people experiencing dying, bereavement and living with long term conditions, although we aim to support everyone. 

Advocacy For All

Our services are for people who lack the capacity to make decisions about serious medical treatments or a change of accommodation; people who are deprived of their liberty; people who require support to make a complaint about an NHS or NHS funded service; people with learning disabilities; people aged 16-25 who have autism or ADHD and/or people who have substantial difficulty in being involved in the assessment and review of their care services.

  • NHS Complaints Advocacy – This is a free, independent and confidential service that can help you if you want to make a complaint about any aspect of NHS care or treatment. You can self-refer.
  • Bexley Speaking Up group (For people with a learning disability) - The aims of the groups are to: support people to have a voice; help people get their voice heard; teach people about their rights; build people’s confidence; meet new people; try new things; share experiences and ideas; learn new skills; work alongside services to make them better and prevent loneliness and isolation. You can self-refer.
  • Bridge to Independence (people with autism or ADHD to develop skills and confidence to find work) - The project aims are to: improve young people’s self-esteem and confidence; improve communication and social skills; increase employability skills and provide young people with strategies and skills towards independence. You can self-refer.
  • Befriending service (including webinars and phone calls) to existing members and others with learning difficulties. To become a member please email us. You can self-refer.

Contact details:

Telephone 0345 310 1812
Email info@advocacyforall.org.uk
Website Advocacy for All

We usually respond to messages the same day and provide services within 48 hours. We prioritise people based on need then first-come first-served.

Bexley & Dartford Samaritans

We provide a telephone and email listening service for those in distress and despair, and for those who need emotional support during a difficult time. 

Contact details: 

Website Bexley & Dartford Samaritans
Email jo@samaritans.org
Telephone Freephone 116 123

We do not have the facility for callers to leave messages - all calls are answered by a volunteer and dealt with on the same day. We prioritise people on a first-come first-served basis.

Family Matters

  • we offer therapy for those who have experienced rape or sexual abuse and are residents of Bexley
  • we also offer a telephone befriending service (fortnightly calls from a helpline member)
  • the services are open to all survivors of sexual violence
  • people can self-refer

Contact details:

Website Family Matters
Email admin@familymattersuk.org
Telephone 01474 536661

We usually respond to messages within 48 hours. There is currently a 20 week waiting list for the Therapy service. We prioritise based on need then first come first served.

Imago

  • Bexley Young Carers, a project for young carers, offers a befriending and welfare service
  • the service is for any young people aged 8 to 18 who live in Bexley and who are taking on caring responsibilities for a family member with a long-term illness, disability, mental health or substance misuse issue

Contact details:

Kelli Gardner
Email Kelli.gardner@imago.community
Telephone Central hub  - 0300 111 1110 or Kelli Gardner - 07702 521064
Website Imago

We usually respond to messages and provide services the same day. We prioritise members first then based on need.

Evergreen Care

We offer a telephone befriending service for anyone (over 60 years old) needing a regular phone call (3 times per week).

Evergreen’s Chaplaincy and Spiritual Care Service – We provide safe and confidential support to our community that is available to everyone: You do not need to be a Christian or a member of any faith community. If you have questions, or are fearful for the future, let us walk with you through the difficult times.

Contact details:

Telephone 01322 431765 (Monday to Friday 10am to 4pm)
Website Evergreen Care Bexley
Email pete@evergreencarebexley.org

We will respond to your message on the same day and provide a service within 24 hours, depending on the capacity of staff. Priority is based on first come first served.

If you need someone to talk to

It’s hard for all of us to stay at home and especially hard for you if you have no company. The organisations below can arrange for someone to talk to you.

Bexley Accessible Transport Service (BATS)

Offers a telephone chat service daily for those who are self-isolating or alone at home.

Phone 01322 311333 (6am to 3pm)
Messages will be responded to within 24 hours (Monday to Friday). Services will be provided within 24 hours.

Carers Support Bexley

Offers telephone befriending, emotional support, information, advice, signposting, advocacy etc for Carers over the telephone.

Contact details:

Telephone 020 8302 8011
Email info@carerssupport.org
Website Carers' Support (Bexley)

Bexley SNAP

  • new toy library service – a selection of toys that are delivered to the home for a week at a time, free of charge
  • one to one or small group ‘Zoom’ sessions for children and young people to stay connected and keep in touch with the SNAP team and peers
  • access to games, quizzes, fitness exercises, craft and cookery sessions via Zoom
  • phased reopening of commissioned short breaks service for 11-year-olds and under with complex/profound disabilities, on an individual or small group basis

Contact details:

Lorraine Smith
Telephone 01322 334192
Email admin@bexleysnap.org.uk
Website Bexley Snap

Messages will be responded to within 48 hours.

Bexley Moorings (for young people) 

  • can self-refer
  • CRISP social group is being offered via zoom link if you are socially isolated and may be struggling now and are worried that you will struggle to reintegrate when restrictions lifted. Offered for 10 to 15-year olds. Can also consider those who had been at risk of exclusion from school and managing their behaviour

Contact details:

Telephone 020 8304 9609
Email info@bexleymoorings.co.uk
Website Bexley Moorings Project

We will respond within 24 hours and aim to offer support within one week. Response time for messages left is the same day.

Bexley Mencap for people with learning disabilities

  • happy to talk by phone or email for people with a learning disability and their families who need to talk or access support
  • have a daily timetable of activities that people with a learning disability can get involved with online, such as virtual classes, competitions and quizzes. Search for ‘Bexley Mencap’ on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram or YouTube
  • we can provide phone or email support to carers on a range of practical issues such as form filling or just a chat with an understanding ear

Contact details:

Telephone 020 8303 6336
Email office@bexleymencap.org.uk
Website Bexley Mencap

We respond within 1 working day and aim to provide a service response time for messages left: 1 working day as soon as possible/within 3 working days.

Bexley Deaf Centre

Bexley Deaf Centre are happy to chat to its service users – if you just want someone to talk to, we are happy to chat.

Call our number and leave your details on our answerphone. These messages are picked up straight away and we can call right back. 

Contact details:

Telephone 01322 351122
Email info@bexleydeafcentre.co.uk
Website Bexley Deaf Centre

We will respond to your message on the same day and provide a service within 1 to 2 days.

Age UK Bexley 

We provide services for older people including:

  • telephone befriending
  • digital cafe
  • information, advice and signposting services (online and via telephone) including financial and benefits advice
  • regular telephone support to our daycare service users
  • (planned re-opening 6 July for private paying clients only)
  • nail cutting service (clinic only)

Contact details:

Telephone 020 8300 0883
Email guy.stevenson@ageukbexley.org.uk
Website Age UK Bexley 

We will respond to your message and provide a service within 24 hours (priority based on need).

Alzheimer’s Society

Alzheimer's Society provide a telephone dementia advice and support service and provide welfare calls for people feeling isolated or are concerned about their memory. 

Contact details:

Telephone 01322 524950 or National Dementia Connect Helpline: 0333 150 3456
Email bexleybranch@alzheimers.org.uk
Website Alzheimer's Society 

We aim to respond to your message within 24 to 72 hours and provide a service appropriate to your need.

Choice Support

Choice Support can offer telephone support regarding benefits for people with mental health issues or Autism. You can self-refer.

Contact details:

Telephone 01322 341123
Email jane.munday@choicesupport.org.uk 
Website Choice Support 

We will respond to your message within 24 hours and provide a service within one week if they need to come into the office. Priority is based on need.

Crossroads Care South East London

Practical and emotional support to carers, including support with shopping, getting medicines delivered etc.

You can self-refer.

Contact details:

Sharon French/Mary Garrity
Telephone 01322 336086 / 01322 341983
Email info@ccsel.org
Website Crossroads Care South East London 

Adult befriending service - Support to older people who may be experiencing isolation/loneliness.

Contact details:

Lynda Munns or Jo Bailey
Telephone 07903 043363
Email l.munns@ccsel.org
Website Crossroads Care South East London

Older carers(65+) service

Lesley Skinner
Telephone 07804 486066
Email l.skinner@ccsel.org
Website Crossroads Care South East London

Cruse

Cruse can provide telephone and email support for bereaved people in our local community.

Contact details:

Telephone 020 8304 5245
Email bexleyandbromley@cruse.org.uk
Website Cruse Bereavement Care

We will respond to your message within 24 hours. Needs are assessed and allocated on a priority basis.

Greenwich & Bexley Hospice

Compassionate Neighbours in Greenwich & Bexley is a project which matches trained ‘Compassionate Neighbours’ with people in their community who are lonely/isolated and/or touched by terminal illness or frailty. In normal circumstances, Compassionate Neighbours visit for around an hour a week to offer their companionship, friendship and to help the person remain connected with their own community. During the COVID-19 outbreak, we are arranging telephone support relationships - following the same principles but supporting people through isolation. We will aim to maintain support once the pandemic is over.

We are happy to accept/consider self-referrals.

Contact details:

Online form (preferred method of contact)
Telephone 020 8312 2244
Email cn@gbch.org.uk
Website Greenwich & Bexley Community Hospice

We will respond to your message on the same day. We will provide services within 48 hours. Priority is given to people experiencing dying, bereavement and living with long term conditions, although we aim to support everyone. 

Mind Bexley

Wellbeing line: For individuals in the borough struggling with their mental health right now. Open Monday to Friday 9am to 6pm.

  • telephone 020 3912 0048

The Bexley Crisis Café is a safe and friendly place for anybody 18 and over who is experiencing severe emotional or psychological distress. It is a drop-in service where you can access mental health support and advice from mental health workers.

Our aim is to provide a safe, relaxing space where you can speak freely with one of our mental health workers about what is going on for you. We offer support, advice and signpost you to a suitable service for you, to help you feel less isolated or to provide support to learn from a crisis.

We are open from 6pm to 10pm from Monday to Sunday including Bank Holidays.

Contact details:

Telephone 020 8303 8932
Email info@mindinbexley.org.uk
Website Mind in Bexley

We aim to answer calls immediately. If demand is particularly high we will return call on the same day and provide services within 24 hours.

Evergreen Care

  • we offer a telephone befriending service for anyone (over 60 years old) needing a regular phone call (3 times per week)
  • Evergreen’s Chaplaincy and Spiritual Care Service – We provide safe and confidential support to our community that is available to everyone. You do not need to be a Christian or a member of any faith community. If you have questions or are fearful for the future, let us walk with you through the difficult times

Contact details:

Telephone 01322 431765 (Monday to Friday 10am to 4pm)
Email pete@evergreencarebexley.org
Website Evergreen Care Bexley

We will respond to your message on the same day and provide a service within 24 hours, depending on the capacity of staff. Priority is based on first come first served.

Headway (South East London and North West Kent)

We are offering a telephone befriending service for our members and others who are acquired brain injury survivors.

We have also launched a new radio service where people with acquired brain injuries (and anyone else who is feeling isolated) can send in their song requests and hear positive stories from each other.

Contact details:

Telephone 020 3058 1020 (Monday to Friday 9am to 5.30pm)
Email tonyhart@headwayselnwk.co.uk

Messages are picked up within 24 hours and services provided within 72 hours (depending on the level of services required). Priorities are to deal with members of Headway first then thereafter based on need.

Bexley Voice

We offer support via our Bexley Voice Facebook group. This service is for Bexley Voice Parent Carer members only. To join Bexley Voice you will need to be a parent/carer of a child or young person with SEND.

We also offer support to SEND parent/carers via our website which we regularly update with information from providers

New service – ‘Virtual Voice support’ - fortnightly Facebook live sessions with professionals and facilitated virtual 1 to 1 sessions, starting from 1 June 2020

Contact details:

Email bexleyvoice@hotmail.co.uk
Facebook group information
Telephone 07512 409936
Website Bexley Voice

Phone messages are only manned once a week so it is better to email us or join our Facebook group.

Bexley & Dartford Samaritans

We provide a telephone and email listening service for those in distress and despair, and for those who need emotional support during a difficult time. 

Contact details:

Website Bexley & Dartford Samaritans
Email jo@samaritans.org
Telephone Freephone 116 123

We do not have the facility for callers to leave messages - all calls are answered by a volunteer and dealt with on the same day. We prioritise people on a first come first served basis.

Advocacy for All

Our services are for people aged 16 to 25 who have autism or ADHD.

  • Bexley Speaking Up group (For people with a learning disability) - The aims of the groups are to: support people to have a voice; help people get their voice heard; teach people about their rights; build people’s confidence; meet new people; try new things; share experiences and ideas; learn new skills; work alongside services to make them better and prevent loneliness and isolation. You can self-refer
  • Bridge to Independence (people with autism or ADHD to develop skills and confidence to find work) - The project aims are to: improve young people’s self-esteem and confidence; improve communication and social skills; increase employability skills and provide young people with strategies and skills towards independence. You can self-refer
  • Befriending service (including webinars and phone calls) to existing members and others with learning difficulties. To become a member please email us. You can self-refer

Contact details:

Telephone 0345 310 1812
Email info@advocacyforall.org.uk
Website Advocacy for All

We usually respond to messages the same day and provide services within 48 hours. We prioritise people based on need then first come first served.

Family Matters

  • we offer therapy for those who have experienced rape or sexual abuse and are residents of Bexley
  • we also offer a telephone befriending service (fortnightly calls from a helpline member)
  • the services are open to all survivors of sexual violence
  • people can self-refer

Contact details:

Website Family Matters
Email admin@familymattersuk.org
Telephone 01474 536661

We usually respond to messages within 48 hours. There is currently a 20-week waiting list for the Therapy service. We prioritise based on need then first come first served.

Imago

  • Bexley Young Carers, a project for young carers, offers a befriending and welfare service
  • the service is for any young people aged 8-18 who live in Bexley and who are taking on caring responsibilities for a family member with a long-term illness, disability, mental health or substance misuse issue

Contact details:

Kelli Gardner
Email Kelli.gardner@imago.community
Telephone Central hub  - 0300 111 1110 or Kelli Gardner - 07702 521064
Website Imago

We usually respond to messages and provide services on the same day. We prioritise members first then based on need.

Bexley Family Lives

Family Lives provide a support service for families with children aged 0 to 5 and their siblings up to 11 years. The service works with families who are isolated and/or need extra help to access children and family centres, health, early years education and childcare services.

The three main services we deliver are:

  • working with children's centres to provide a range of activities
  • a home visiting family support service
  • parenting workshops and programmes 

Families can be referred to us directly or where there are more complex needs, through a professional. To request support please download, complete and submit the request form. 

Download support request form (PDF)

Referred families will be offered phone and/or virtual support regularly and will be contacted by the home visiting service as soon as possible.

Due to Covid-19, our services are currently offered virtually, which consist of play and activity sessions for various age groups, sharing space sessions and bite-size parenting workshops. See our Facebook page for further information including dates and times.

For more information, contact the team:

Family Lives nationally offer the following additional resources to any family:

Parenting videos

Play resources

Helpline - Family Lives offers a confidential and free* helpline service. Please call 0808 800 2222 or email askus@familylives.org.uk for information, advice, guidance and support on any aspect of parenting and family life, including bullying. The helpline service is open 9am – 9 pm Monday to Friday and 10am – 3pm at weekends.

* free from landlines and most mobiles

Forum - Our forums are a safe space for families to share dilemmas, experiences and issues with others who understand the ups and downs of family life.

Live online chat - You can contact us about any family or parenting issue. Open Monday to Friday 1.30pm to 5.30pm. See website for more information.

Healthwatch

We are happy to talk to people who feel isolated.

We have a survey on our website but are very happy just to chat to people about the difficulties they may be experiencing and also what may be working well. This will be shared with Healthwatch England and local service commissioners. We are particularly interested in how people are coping who do not use social media or have a computer etc.

Contact details:

Telephone 020 8304 9344
Email info@healthwatchbexley.co.uk
Website Healthwatch Bexley

We will respond to your message and provide a service within 24 hours.

Act for Change

  • we provide one to one support for young people who experience trauma
  • we provide a new project ‘Ethical Entrepreneur Youth Pathway’. There are two levels: - Bronze level – young people aged 11 to 15 engage with local and global issues; Silver level – older youths aged 16+ that offers young people the opportunity to learn and develop entrepreneurial skills with local business and community support
  • you can self-refer    

Contact details:

Lea Misan
Telephone 07793 656225
Email lea@actforchange.org.uk
Website Act for Change  

We will respond to your message on the same day and provide a service within 48 hours. We prioritise first come first served. 

Older people

Positive Ageing in London (PAiL) brings together London-wide and local groups from the voluntary and statutory sectors. Their website includes a range of information and advise on Coronavirus as well as information on volunteering, financial issues and keeping well.

Get help managing your weight

Families

Families living in Bexley or registered with a Bexley GP practice can join a free 8-week Alive ‘n’ Kicking programme for children aged 4 to 11 who need help to lose weight. The service is provided by Everyone Health and is delivered virtually using the video conferencing platform zoom through a mix of 1-1 and group calls. Families can enjoy cooking fresh healthy meals alongside a healthy weight practitioner and will get tips on meal planning, health reinforcing behaviours and ways to manage weight in a positive, non-judgemental space.

For more information or to join a programme call 020 8432 8535 or email bexleyank@everyonehealth.co.uk

Adults

Bexley residents or those registered with a Bexley GP Practice wanting to lose weight can be referred to Bexley’s Weight Management Referral Service, provided by Slimming World.

The service provides 12-weeks free membership to any Slimming World group in the borough. Currently the service is offering temporary virtual groups using video conferencing platform Zoom. The group is hosted by a Slimming World consultant and members can join from home and receive support to make healthier food choices and stay in control of healthy new lifestyle habits.

To be eligible for the service you must be aged 16 and over and fit into one of the following criteria:

  • have a long-term health condition or Black/Asian ethnicity and a Body Mass Index higher or equivalent to 27.5kg/m2 
  • have a Body Mass Index higher or equivalent to 30kg/m2

You can self-refer to the service by contacting Slimming World on 01773 307387. Lines are open Monday to Friday 9am to 6.30pm. Alternatively you can be referred by a health professional.

Fit Fans in Bexley is a free 12-week programme for football fans who want to lose weight and improve their health. Programmes will be resuming face to face in September and more details about the venues will be released. For more information or to sign up to a programme, check your eligibility via Fit Fans or email Charlton Athletic team at fitfans@cact.org.uk.

What’s BMI?

Your Body Mass Index is a number based on your height and weight which gives an idea of whether you could benefit from losing or gaining weight. The NHS recommends that most people keep their BMI between 18 and 25. You can work yours out here.

Get help to quit smoking

Smokers are more at risk of developing acute symptoms of the coronavirus. There has never been a more serious reason to quit.

Bexley Stop Smoking Service is available to anyone who wants to stop smoking and who has a Bexley GP. The free, friendly and effective support offers the full range of evidence-based smoking cessation medication as well as weekly telephone support from a specialist. You are three times more likely to quit using this service than if you try to go it alone.