Looking after your health and wellbeing

It’s really important that during these times of disruption caused by coronavirus that everyone pays attention to their own wellbeing, and the wellbeing of those around them.  

If you’re feeling anxious or worried about coronavirus, or dealing with stress we’ve put some information below that might help. You can also visit the NHS website Every Mind Matters for practical advice about looking after your mental health.

Keep active 

Even when self-isolating, you can still stay active in your home. Try to build physical activity into your routine; this can be simple tasks and there are options for most ages and abilities such as: 

  • cleaning your home 
  • dancing to music
  • going up and down stairs
  • seated exercises
  • online exercise workouts you can follow
  • sitting less (if you notice you’ve been sitting down for an hour, just getting up or changing position can help)

Find out more about staying active during the pandemic.

Connect with others 

  • Make plans to video chat with people or groups you’d normally see in person.
  • Arrange phone calls or send instant messages, or texts.
  • If you're going online more than usual or seeking peer support on the internet, it's important to look after your online wellbeing. See our pages about online mental health for more information.  
  • Listen to a chatty radio station or podcast if your home feels too quiet.

Give your time

We’re facing an unprecedented situation with the impact of coronavirus and want to make sure our communities are supported. You can volunteer your time, no matter how big or small, to make a difference during these difficult times.

Find out about volunteering as a Barnsley community responder.

Keep learning 

It’s really important that families have the right resources to make sure that their children can continue to learn. We’ve put together a list of online resources that may be useful for families below. 

  • If your children are feeling worried or anxious about coronavirus, watch Dr Ranj’s video who explains the coronavirus to children. 

  • BBC Bitesize has a variety of support for children of all ages. They'll be bringing you daily content as schools close across the UK, to help you and your children’s education and wellbeing. You can also read the BBC’s five ways to keep your children occupied (and learning!) at home.

  • For parents with children under five years old see hungrylittleminds.campaign.gov.uk

  • The government's Department for Education are working with the BBC and others to provide resources for children to access while at home. More information will follow about what DfE is doing to support parents.

  • Adults can also keep learning in their free time. Learning a new skill can also boost self-esteem and keep your mind active during these difficult times.

  • If you are unemployed and live in Barnsley, you can access one-to-one support to help you get the skills you need to find the job you want. The Wiseability and Growth Hub Team are local and able to help you; visit their website or call 07495 359148. 

Staying busy 

Although our museums are closed, the teams are making sure there’s lots of interesting content online for everyone to enjoy. Visit the museums website and follow them on social media, where the #MuseumsFromHome is sure to keep you entertained.  

There’s also content you can look at on their YouTube channel, where you can discover online exhibitions and collections. Have a look at the museum blogspodcasts, films, beautiful photographs, plus much more.  

eBooks and eAudio

The Libby app lets you download eBooks and eAudio straight to your device, so you can keep reading and learning while at home.

Instead of having to go into a library to set up a PIN to access the app, you can head to our website to fill in an online form and ask for your PIN code. Someone in our libraries team will then get in touch over email to help you get set up. There’s a video on our webpage to help you get to grips with using the app. 

There’s loads to read and listen to, and the app is available on iOS and Android.

We even have a range of digital magazines for you to enjoy. 

Useful resources

Here’s a list of current resources that are available online. 


Children and young people

General health and wellbeing

Useful contacts

  • Recovery Steps
    For drug and alcohol support during this difficult time, our service in Barnsley is called Recovery Steps. You can contact them by calling (01226) 779066. Follow them on Twitter for regular updates, or visit their website for more information.

    You can also find additional guidance on managing alcohol intake.