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How to guide / FAQ

 

What is the Talk Community Directory?

Talk Community Directory is a website for all residents in Herefordshire. You can use the website to find helpful information and advice, discover hundreds of local groups and activities and find out what events are happening across the county.

It’s a way to enable people to stay happy, healthy and independent, by providing clear, up-to-date information, when people need it.  It’s a great way to connect people to what’s on in their local area, to the variety of voluntary and community groups in Herefordshire.

The website is also a valuable way for local providers of services to create awareness about what they do; a way to showcase groups and activities in the county and increase awareness about the choices available to people.

As there’s a wealth of information to benefit people in Herefordshire, the directory website also proves a quick reference tool for practitioners.

To help you on your way, we’ve compiled a list of frequently asked questions.

About the directory 

It can help you by providing helpful information and guidance - there is a wealth of information on the website that covers the following areas:

  • Children and families – from pregnancy, support for parents and families, through to school life, understanding child development and behaviour, and leaving school.
  • Equipment, adaptations and technology - helping you stay independent and safe in your own home, including information about daily living equipment and assistive technology.
  • Housing and accommodation – includes information about accommodation options in Herefordshire, homelessness prevention and housing advice and help to heat your home.
  • Keeping safe – includes a wide range of information, including online safety, scams, safety at home and in the community, through to bullying, self-harm and domestic abuse.
  • Keeping well, staying healthy - information includes healthy eating, stopping smoking, mental health and emotional wellbeing, loneliness and bereavement support.
  • Local offer - the support, services and information available for children and young people, with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) and their families.
  • Looking after someone - information for both adult and young carers, including carer support organisations and emergency help for carers.
  • Learning, work and volunteering – includes information about careers advice, apprenticeships and traineeships, and support for young people not in education, employment or training along with where to find volunteering opportunities.
  • Money & Legal – information about money, debt and budgeting, including the Money on your Mind resource, planning for the future and paying for care and support.
  • Support and care – ways to support yourself at home including falls prevention, managing correspondence, meals and shopping though to social care and different support and care options.
  • Transport, travel and mobility – includes information about public and community transport, school transport, toilet facilities and walking and mobility equipment.

The information pages contain a wealth of signposting to both local and national organisations that can support.

The website has a directory of over 850 “Services and groups” across the county, along with a “Home care” and “Care homes” directory. There’s an active “What’s on calendar”, to find out what’s happening in your area. 

You can also find out where your nearest Talk Community hub is in your area, through Where is my nearest Talk Community hub? There is a handy map function to help.  Talk Community hubs are safe places that connect people to services, groups and activities, and bring people together.

The website has been developed primarily for residents of Herefordshire. There may be cross-border services and activities provided for Herefordshire residents who live near the borders with Shropshire, Worcestershire, Gloucestershire and Wales.

The directory is also a great resource for people moving to the county, and for people looking out for friends or family living in the county.

The directory can also provide information about national organisations who provide their service or activity in Herefordshire, or provide an online service.

My Information Booklet is a handy little function, to pull together information from across the website, into one booklet. For example, if there’s an information page that’s of value, a few services of interest to you, along with a couple of events, you can add them all to your booklet, so the information is together in one place. You can add any page on the Talk Community Directory to the 'My Information Booklet'.

You can create your own booklet to view or print later. To do this, go to the page you would like to add to your booklet, hover your curser over 'My Information Booklet' in the top right of the website, and click "Add to booklet". Alternatively, look out for the “Add to my information booklet” buttons, click and add your pages this way. Repeat this process until you have added all of the pages you wish to, to your booklet.

When you have all the pages you would like, hover over the 'My Information Booklet', and click 'Create favourites booklet”. You then have the option to select your text size and amount of detail to show in the booklet.  You can then email the booklet to yourself or someone you know.

Top tip:  Check out your junk / spam folder, for the emailed booklet. There is a chance that the booklet being emailed will go in to your junk / spam folder, especially if it’s the first time that you’ve produced a booklet.

Top tip: It’s great to know that all of the links within the booklet are live links, so you’ll go direct to an organisations website, if you click on their link.

Top tip: If you’re using a shared laptop or tablet, it’s good to ensure that you have your auto-fill settings turned off.  This will ensure that the email address that you input, will not show when the next person produces a booklet.

When organisations add their services and activities to the directory website, they can tick to say they are looking to recruit volunteers. This is another great way for organisations to help spread the word that they’re looking for volunteers.  It’s also an additional way for members of the public, looking for volunteering opportunities, to see which organisations have volunteer roles available.

This function does not provide the details about volunteer roles as such, unless the organisation has added their volunteering opportunity as a service.

If you would like to provide feedback about the website, please use the ‘Feedback'  form at the top of the pages.

We do our best to keep the information on this website up to date and welcome any comments from you about information which is out of date or which you think would be useful.  You can let us know though the Feedback function, or you’ll see this message at the bottom of each directory listing page, so you can go straight to our Contact page - “If you notice an error in this listing or require a change, please contact us”.



Finding information

There are several ways to find information and advice on the Talk Community Directory.

On the 'Information & Advice' drop down menu on the homepage, select an area, then you can browse all of the pages relevant to that area on the directory.

If you know what you’re looking for, try typing a word or phrase into the search bar at the top of the website. This will also take you to a list of the relevant information pages in our 'Information and Advice' section.

From here, you can move across the directories to see what’s in “Services and groups” or “What’s on”, for example.

Tip: To keep a check on what part of the directory website you’re in, look out for which heading is in a solid orange colour.

You can find our Services and Groups directory by clicking the “Services and Groups” button on the homepage.  Our directory contains hundreds of local organisations and groups and allows you to find providers of community support services that are suitable for you or those you care about.  The directory includes charities, social enterprises, community interest companies, businesses, sole traders and care providers.

Through the directory you can find provider contact details, see what services they offer and any costs.

If you know what you’re looking for, try typing a word or phrase into the search bar at the top of the website, and then move to “Services and groups”, to look at the results. When in “Services and groups”, you can use the filters along the top of the directory to refine your search by location in the county, age group or by areas of interest.

Note: The services listed on Talk Community Directory are not audited or endorsed by the site. All providers wishing to list their services on Talk Community Directory need to sign up to and uphold the Code of Conduct.

You can find a broad range of events and activities across Herefordshire on the What’s on calendar, ranging from fundraising events, to weekly social groups, lunch clubs and fitness classes, to networking events and training courses.

You can refine your search using the search filters, to be able to search for activities by location, including those within a certain distance of a postcode, handy if you live in a village or rural area.  You can search for what events are taking place between certain dates, or by selecting “This week”, “Next week”, “This month”, “Next month”.

There’s a handy range of interest categories, to refine your search further, whether you’re looking for arts and crafts, family and outdoor activities, or for coffee mornings and lunch clubs, for example.

Here’s our run down of a few top tips for searching on the Talk Community Directory, to help you get to the information that’s of value and interest as quickly as possible.

Top tip: When searching using words or phrases, keeping your search words / phrases short and specific works best e.g. put “walking” rather than “walking groups”.  This will give you the most relevant results at the top of the list.

Top tip:  If you’re searching for information and services using the search bar and search filters together, it’s best to type in to the search bar first, and then use the search filters.

Top tip:  If you have used the search bar and then wish to do a new search using the location and category filters, make sure you clear the search bar and click on the looking glass first of all (otherwise your previous search phrase will still appear).

If you know of an activity that takes place in Herefordshire but it is not currently listed, let us know by clicking on the 'Feedback' button at the top of the website screen.  Alternatively our contact details are in “Contact us” section, which you can find at the bottom of the website screen.

We want as many people as possible to be able to use our website, and make the text as simple as possible to understand.

If you require the size of the text to be bigger, or for the text and background to be a different colour, you can use the settings along the top of the website page.

You can also translate the whole of the Talk Community Directory into over 100 different languages, using the “Select language” bar at the top of the website pages.  Click on the drop down arrow and select the language required. Please note: This function is not available when using Internet Explorer as your browser.

For full information about our website accessibility, visit the Accessibility section at the bottom of the website or you can contact the team on info@talkcommunitydirectory.org with any questions you have.


Adding a listing

If you run a service, group, home care organisation or care home in Herefordshire, and would like to be featured in the Talk Community Directory, please click on our Register section at the top of the website, and select the relevant option.  Alternatively, you can click on the “Add…” button, within the different directory sections.

You will be asked to read and agree to our Code of conduct

You can then complete the short form, where you can add your service description, along with contact details. 

Once the Talk Community Directory team receive your form, we’ll add you to the website or contact you if we need any further details.

Tip: any information that you include on the form, will appear on the website.  Hence please don’t include any personal contact information that you do not wish members of the public to see.

Tip: If you’d like a map to appear on your listing page, to show where your service is, pop your postcode into the “Postcode” field and the system will do the rest.

Tip: It’s good if you can tick all categories which are appropriate for your service, as this will help people find your information when using the search filters on the website.

If you have an event coming up, or a regular activity, which you would like to be featured for free, please click on our Register section at the top of the website, and select “Add an event or activity”.  Alternatively, you can go to our What's on calendar and click on the “Add an event” button.

There’s a short form to complete, where you can describe what your event/activity involves, and add contact details, venue and cost.  Be sure to click on “Set date”, to include the date(s) of your event/activity.

Once the Talk Community Directory team receive your form, we’ll add the event to the calendar or contact you if we need any further details.

Tip:  If your activity takes place on a regular basis, you only need to enter the details once. You can select what date the activity will end (or after how many sessions), and it will then automatically be removed from the calendar.

Tip: Any information that you include on the form, will appear on the website.  Hence please don’t include any personal contact information that you do not wish members of the public to see.

Tip: It’s great to let people know exactly where the event is – if you include your postcode in the “Postcode” field, a map will appear on your event listing page.

Tip: You can a poster too! It just needs to be in a JPEG or PNG format, less than 5 MB.

Your listing is the way you communicate with potential customers through the Talk Community Directory.  To create that impact, to let people know who you are, your information will need to reflect the service you provide, be clear and easy to understand and up to date. When building or updating your listing, it’s good to have the following in mind:

  • Prioritise your first 500 characters (include key information)
  • Use all the fields on the form, to give people as much detail as possible*
  • Select all categories relevant to your service or activity
  • Keep your listing up to date

It’s great to include an image too (which needs to be a JPEG or PNG, maximum size 1 MB), along with links to your social media accounts.

*we appreciate that it’s not always appropriate to complete the “Address” field though, for example for sole traders or small community groups who only have a personal address.

If you already have a listing on the directory, whether it’s an event, service or home care organisation, and you’d like to make some changes to your information, please contact the Talk Community Directory team directly on info@talkcommunitydirectory.org.  The team can either make the changes for you, or they can send you the log-in details for each of your page listings on the directory, which will enable you to make the updates yourself.

You can also contact us through social media.  Visit our Contact us section for the options of how to contact us, which is at the bottom of the website pages.