Darkness into light
Darkness into light.
We gather this morning at V36 as an act of solidarity for people affected by suicide and self-harm.
As darkness gives way to light; as yesterday becomes history, and a new day emerges full of potential; a day of hope is born.
At times it may seem that you are alone and in pain, but the people here this morning prove that you are not facing this alone. We are here to help and support you see the dawn each morning. However, if you need a non-judgemental empathetic listening ear we are here for you.
Updates and trips
Listening Ear have received funding from the Department of Health to employee fulltime members of staff from the start of April 2022 after operating on a fully volunteer basis since 2018. This will ensure that the Office is staffed full time in order to provide more appointments for the services provided.
Between the start of November 2021 to the middle of March 2022 Listening Ear provided new white goods to a value of £12000. These appliances were given to those either homeless or at threat of becoming homeless.
March seen the Knit and Natter group group visit Colemans Garden Centre and April seen Abbey Allsorts visiting Armagh Planetarium.
Listening Ear supported by NIHE are delighted to lead a two year program for those with homeless points going into a Housing Executive property in Newtownabbey 1 and 2. This program will support with decorating costs and white good.
NIVSO Veterans Roadshow
Listening Ear were delighted to be part of the Veterans Roadshow hosted by NIVSO in the Dunadry Hotel on the 8th February 2022.
New connections made and our services introduced to new clients.
An Ulster-Scots Evening
The first Ulster Scots evening for Listening Ear: highland dancers, Centenary talk by Quincey Dougan and then a Chef talking through an Ulster Scots menu. Attendees of all ages enjoying an evening together.
Listening Ear Lobbying at the House of Commons and House of Lords
Listening Ear lobbying at the House of Commons and House of Lords. Raising individual client cases and issues impacting the community. Great to receive support from both Houses.
Meeting with HRH Duchess of Glouchesters
Covid 19 volunteer awards night
Rathcoole Covid 19 volunteer awards night compared by Councillor Robert Foster, awards presented by the Mayoy of Antrim and Newtownabbey Borough Council Councillor Billy Webb JP.
Attendees Listening Ear, Cloughfern District LOL No 24 , Billy Boy FB, Abbey Allsorts, Rathcoole FC, Newtownabbey Women's Group, Methodist Mission, The Breakaways, Team JVC, Marks and Spencer's and ANBC Council staff.
Thank you all. You made a difference to our community.
Health Minister Visit
A constructive afternoon for Listening Ear having a private meeting with HRH The Duchess of Gloucester.
Robin Swann, Health Minister, attended Listening Ear on the morning of the 31st August 2021. During his visit the Minister heard of the work undertaken to date, the work ongoing and the plans for the future.
We look forward to future meetings.
Northern Ireland Mental Health Champion Visit
Abbey Allsorts Summer Scheme
Professor Siobhan O'Neill, Mental health Champion, visited the Listening Ear office on the 31st August 2021.
The start of the next stage for Listening Ear.
Abbey Allsorts summer scheme 2021. A busy week for the members of Abbey Allsorts. The summer scheme included visits to the Ark Open Farm, Airtastic, VIP seats at the Movie House and Aunt Sandra's sweet factory. The children and parents/ guardians also enjoyed a party disco and a visit from the Big White Coach team.
Sir Jeffrey Donaldson Visit
School Uniform recycling scheme
Listening Ear had the pleasure of a meeting with Sir Jeffrey Donaldson MP, Paula Bradley MLA, Councillor Victor Robinson and Councillor Paul Hamill.
A positive meeting discussing the progress and future plans of Listening Ear within the Macedon area.
The needs of the community were raised and discussed.
Further meetings with Sir Jeffrey Donaldson to be held.
It was great to welcome the Mayor of Antrim and Newtownabbey Cllr Billy Webb MBE JP and Alderman McGrath to the School Uniform Scheme ran by Listening Ear in the Dunnaney Centre today.
Uniforms are available from a range of local schools. They are all good quality and free to anyone with children attending the local schools.
Just pop in to Listening Ear or ring them on 028 9508 5934 to check stock and sizes. #reusereducerecycle
Visit from Doug Beattie MLA
Listening Ear chaired a community dialogue between Doug Beattie MLA and business owners, community groups reps, Loyal Order reps and voluntary group reps. The event allowed for lobbying to occur directly between the community and the Leader of the UUP.
The area is seeing an increase in the number of positive COVID-19 tests. If you test positive for Covid-19 it is important that your oxygen levels are monitored. To allow for this to occur Listening Ear have 30 pulse oximeters which can be loaned out.
Once the units are no longer required by the individual they will be sealed and fogged prior to re issue to the next person.
Northern Ireland Veterans Support Office
We are delighted to work with the Northern Ireland Veterans Support Office.
DFC community Support
Listening Ear will be working with Department for Communities in the next round of Covid-19 support.
If you have been financially impacted by Covid-19 and require support and assistance please phone 02895085934 between 11am and 2pm to register for food, baby essentials, cleaning and personal hygiene products.
Listening Ear will be supporting the Macedon area, excluding Whiteabbey. Whiteabbey hub will cover Whiteabbey.
Week 1 & 2. A busy 8 days with the hampers. A total of £2000 of food, cleaning products, personal hygiene and meat has been delivered to homes in the Macedon area. We hope this has helped the families that received them.
Another busy week for Listening Ear with community support covering housing, welfare, mental health, training and domestic violence. Please remember Listening Ear is a Safe Place
£1000 of food, hygiene and cleaning materials distributed this week to those in need.
New fridges and chest freezer now in to support the program.
Essential Skills MATH course.
If you would like to study this course please contact us to register your interest. This course will be commencing on the 10th February in the evenings for 15 weeks.
If you would like to study for a CSR card or CMI L2 Award in Team Leading or CMI L3 award in coaching and mentoring or CMI L3 award in Principles of management and leadership please contact us and register your interest.
ONLINE essential skills ICT Course.
If you are interested in this course please contact us for further information. The courses are scheduled to start on the 24th February 2021.
Requirements: Computer equipment/software/Wi-Fi connected, Must have basic computer skills (use the internet/email/simple word etc.)
If you feel you have strong computer skills, please go for the 10 week groups. However, if you feel you would like to spend extra time to embed what you are learning please go for the 16 week groups.
Homeless Veteran housed
Homeless Veteran housed.
Yesterday one of our clients received the keys to his new home. Listening Ear records our thanks to the Northern Ireland Veterans Support Office, the Housing Executive and Jimmy Joe for their assistance in making this possible; this support was invaluable. All completed in a short period of time during Covid and Christmas.
It shows when people work together and statutory bodies work with community organisations all things are possible.
Listening Ear has also provided a new home pack to the client. May you have many happy peaceful years in your new home.
Listening ear liaised with Barnardos to ensure a family received toys for Christmas.
When groups work together success occurs.
Listen Share Change
Listening Ear supported by the Housing Executive are planning to host a "Listen Share Change" course starting in January for 10 weeks via zoom.
If you are interested in taking part please PM us and when details are finalised we can advise.
Keep yourself engaged during periods of lockdown.
Abbey Allsorts members received a special visit from Listening Ear and Santa.
Last week was a busy week for Listening Ear with the delivery of the Christmas Covid-19 project on top of the normal day to day work.
Over the course of the week £1500 in gas and electricity, £1000 in meat hampers, £1000 in toy vouchers and £2500 on food hampers were delivered to people's homes.
Thank you for the volunteers that supported us in this work.