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What We Do

We provide help and support in all of the following circumstances:

Coping on a reduced budget or managing debts
Filling in forms
Approaching retirement
Accessing exercise groups to improve health and wellbeing
Becoming a carer
Arranging care or carer assessment
Accessing falls prevention equipment
Separating from a partner
Making end of life arrangements
Managing after a partner has died

We Will:

  • Take the time you need to listen
  • Support you to make sure your concerns are addressed
  • Talk about options available to you to achieve what you need
  • Complete forms for benefits, housing and care services
  • Speak to organisations and agencies to help you to access services
  • Help you to access relevant information and services

Listed below are just some of the ways we can help and support yourself or someone you know.

Contact us by Telephone ( 0191 456 6903 ) so that we can arrange a meeting with an appropriate team member.

  • Arrange a telephone appointment
  • Arrange an appointment at our office on Beach Road, South Shields
  • Arrange a meeting at your local community centre or near your home
  • Arrange a home visit if that’s best for you

On-line: send an e-mail to

We regularly hold drop in advice sessions at various community venues across South Tyneside.

Notification of exactly when and where the sessions will be held are posted on Facebook and this website.

Information and Advice

It's free, independant, confidential and impartial

We provide  advocacy and specialist advice on benefits, health and social care, financial planning, energy bills, debt and significant life events. We have trained, specialist Advisors who can help resolve whatever is bothering you.

We can:

Check your benefits – many of the people we do this for find they are owed money; we will help you to get the money you are entitled to

Check your energy bills – we can do a comparison and make sure you are getting the best deal

Fill in forms – if you need a hand to fill in forms, particularly online, we can help with this

Sort out complex Care issues – we can advocate for you and help you to negotiate any issues relating to care

Set up Lasting Power of Attorney – many people find it comforting to know they have asked someone, generally a family member, to take care of legal issues for the future, and we can set this up for you (there is a charge for the forms used for this).

Resolve debt issues – we will write to debtors and help reschedule payments so you can manage better

Make financial plans – we can help you plan for the future, to make sure you feel secure.

These services are provided from our base in South Shields, as well as at weekly sessions in different parts of the borough, currently Jarrow, Boldon and Hebburn – let us know where you are and we’ll book you in for the nearest place.

In some circumstances, generally due to the frailty of the person we are working with, we can make home visits.

See our Information and Advice Team.

Home Support

Maintain your independence

Our Home Support Team aim to keep you happy at home, living independently, by doing some of the jobs that are starting to get a bit much for you. One of the friendly team can come in once a month or several times a week – that’s completely up to you.

.  You may want someone to:

  • do an hours cleaning for you
  • pick up your shopping list and do your week’s shopping then pop it away in the cupboard
  • pick you up in their car and do the shopping with you
  • Collect prescriptions or perhaps your dry cleaning
  • take you to the bank or Post Office – you may feel happier having someone with you for these occasional trips
  • Help with telephone or internet shopping (if you have an internet connection)
  • just pop in and have a nice coffee and a chat

The Home Support Service costs £15.00 an hour, and this can be paid any way that is best for you.

See our Home Support Team.

Home From Hospital

Free practical and emotional support

If you have to go in to hospital for whatever reason, the staff there will make an assessment before sending you home, to ensure you have the right support in place to help you recover from your hospital stay.

It is likely you will need some support for a few weeks; our friendly team of ACTS Support Workers will help to make your return home from hospital easier. We will also offer support which can help prevent an admission or readmission into hospital.

If you have to go in to hospital for whatever reason, the staff there will make an assessment before sending you home, so you have the right support in place to help you recover from your hospital stay.

We can:

Escort or transport you home from hospital, or meet you at home to help you get settled-in, turn on the heating and lights and make you a cupppa

Offer week by week support, while you regain confidence and independence, with practical day to day tasks such as shopping, getting out and about, attending appointments, going for a walk, collecting prescriptions

Keep in touch either by telephone or home visits to see how you are doing

Offer encouragement and motivation to help you keep active and healthy

Find out about groups and activities in your area or support you to get back out and about in your usual routine

Offer you other ACTS services such as benefits advice, a falls prevention home assessment, domestic support or community activities

We can support you for up to a maximum of 6 weeks, however our aim is to help you be able to manage without us before then!

We concentrate on supporting you with day to day tasks which you will be able to continue doing by yourself in the weeks ahead.

Please note we are not home carers, so we are unable to support with personal care needs or medication.

See our Home from Hospital Team.

Handy Service

Supporting independent living

Providing practical advice and solutions to reduce falls in the home, supporting independent living by fitting aids and adaptations  and carrying out home assessments for energy issues.

Our Handy Service can visit your home to identify (and fix) fall hazards such as:

  •  Loose carpets, lino, rugs or trailing wires
  • Low light levels, such as blocked windows and broken lightbulbs
  • Cluttered walkways, especially steps & stairs
  • Tripping points, such as raised thresholds and hidden steps
  • Overgrown paths and access routes to your doorway

We can recommend and carry out actions to remove or reduce most hazards, depending on the size and scale of the work required. 

Our Handy Service can install equipment to keep you steady and safe in your home, such as handrails, banister rails and key safes, so people can visit you without you having to get to the door.

The Handy Service can also identify ways you can save energy (and money on your bills!), including fitting free measures such as draft  excluders and energy-saving lightbulbs.

See our Handy Service Team.

Community Connections

Get together for fun, fitness, friendship

All sorts of social connections  – whether that’s a regular coffee or lunch with others, hobby groups, keeping physically fit and well or special events, we bring people together for fun and company.

We want people to be able to connect with others in every neighbourhood, so people don’t have to travel far to meet up with friends for a coffee and a chat, or an activity they want to try.

We have regular activities, led by volunteers, available to all, including:

A monthly Tea Dance

Physical exercise sessions – from seated exercise to Dancercise

Walking groups

Gardening groups

We can also work with you to get something going in your area; if you’ve always fancied having a local history group, or a crafters session, or some Pilates, contact our Community Development Team ( phone: 0191 456 6903 ) and they’ll help you to get it going, by advertising, finding a place to meet, finding a group lead if needed and anything else which will help you to get what you want going on your own doorstep.

Feeling a bit isolated? Joining a group feels a bit much? We can connect you with 2 or 3 other people (a Tyney Link!) and meet in a café or pub near where you live, so you can have some friendly contact and take things at your own pace.

Had an experience that’s hard to bear? Sadly, major health issues or the loss of a loved one are things that older age brings; being able to talk with someone, on the phone or face-to-face, who has gone through a similar experience to you can really help.

See our Community Development Team.

Digital Inclusion

Make the most of technology and be safe on-line

We provide a wide range of computing taster sessions and short courses for both beginners and those wishing to enhance their existing skills. Our courses avoid jargon and explain everything in plain English, so you feel confident to build upon your new skills at home.

We have a number of Digital Inclusion activities, which vary depending on demand and funding, but usually include:

Small group support – this is with trained volunteers, to develop your knowledge and skills to do what you want to do. This may include setting up an email address, filling in forms online, or finding out how to chat to family or friends online.

One-to-one support – often things are going well until they don’t! If we have capacity, we’ll offer support to trouble shoot the specific issue you have; it might be setting up your TV, getting your phone to do what you want it to do, or resolving a problem with a tablet or laptop. We can’t guarantee we’ll sort it, but if we can we will.

Use of our Computer Room – we have a small number of internet connected computers and these are available for people to use, booked in advance