When lockdown came into effect, we had lots of information to share and actions to implement quickly to ensure we all stayed safe. But we did it. We pulled together and showed true team spirit.
Residents and staff understood that our communal areas needed to close for everyone’s safety. This lack of social contact meant we now needed to take on new roles in our residents’ lives. For some residents who had regular contact with family members we were now the only human contact they had. They lent on us to fill the void that lockdown created. For others who were normally very independent, the uncertainty of the situation meant they were asking for support for the first time.
Yet some of our residents took it all in their stride and said, “I’ve lived through the blitz, I can live through this”, sharing their fighting spirit.
The schools where shut and working parents where stressed. We changed shift patterns and staff really pulled together. The children didn’t seem phased by it one bit and sent in pictures for us to decorate the scheme with. We sent home colouring packs to help keep the children busy.
Treats for staff started coming in thick and fast, chocolates, biscuits, tea, coffee, hand creams (small saviour) and PPE was donated. Local schools got involved, making face shields for our team and sending in beautiful pictures for our residents. We couldn’t show our appreciation quick enough. The local ice-cream man became our hero making regular visits and kindly donating ice-cream to staff and residents to get us through the hottest days.
In April the clap for carers started and we all took part to show our appreciation for all frontline key workers. The weeks flew by. Families were kept updated over the phone. Video calls where supported by staff and chairs provided for those families who could come and sit at a window.
To celebrate VE day we decorated the scheme, staff dressed in their best red, white and blue and we brought the party to the door steps. Wearing PPE, changed for every flat, we delivered a plate full of party food and sang Vera Lynn ‘we’ll meet again’ on repeat as we walked round. Residents met us on their doorsteps, some dressed to impress for the occasion, showing that we will not let COVID-19 beat us! It was such a fantastic day.
Then on an afternoon in May, we were visited by Olympic Boxer Amir Khan! He came loaded with boxes of food for our residents. We were so excited and proud for our scheme and our residents to be recognised.
Future events will continue (door to door) and our residents’ growing needs continue to be met. Although these are difficult times, COVID-19 has shown us how strong a team we are and just what a difference we make to our customers’ lives.