By aebal Stories, Nov 1 2020 04:38PM
So, it appears the second wave has arrived a little more abruptly than anticipated! I think it's important to acknowledge that this was something we were all aware was likely to happen at some point before the end of the year, but we were obviously a little mislead over the last few weeks with Tiers and then a complete and sudden U-Turn on implementing a National Lockdown.
This new Lockdown is a milder version of the one back in March, however, the clear message from the Government is once again, Stay Home - Protect the NHS - Save Lives
What this means for aebal support:
As I mentioned in the Tier 2 email on 13th October 'We would only consider returning to our Alternative Support Model and remote support if there was another National Lockdown or we had an outbreak within the service which meant it was safer to temporarily suspend all community support'.
As you have no doubt anticipated, we will be returning to our Alternative Support Model from this Thursday 5th November.
Today's sessions, tomorrow's and Wednesday will be running as normal with just a few tweaks due to venue availability. Then from Thursday we will be returning to set charging based on the minimum hours as stated on each client's updated Session Timetables. If you need us to resend any Session Timetables to clarify charged hours then please get in touch.
What the Alternative Support Model will involve this time around:
The good news is that we obviously still have a lot of Alternative Support Model things in place to return to with the Zoom quizzes, Hangman, fun facts etc. Also, the Monday Zoom disco session will simply carry on as it has been to provide some much needed normality for the clients who are involved in that one.
Obviously, we are again temporarily suspending all Connect sessions / Group Activities and the Saturday Road Trips. Hopefully just for 4 weeks but we'll have to wait and see what future Government announcements reveal....
We have given a lot of thought as to what is a sensible level of community support to deliver this time around, taking into account the differences between this less severe Lockdown and the one from March.
As Schools and Universities are remaining open, you are allowed to meet for walks with one other person outside your household and they're also keeping the Premier League going! we have decided that it is safe and feasible to offer 121 Community Visits to all our clients during this New Lockdown period.
We are all struggling with our Mental Health as this Pandemic enters into it's ninth month and, as Key Workers, we strongly feel we need to ensure we continue to provide a sufficient level of community support to those who depend on us.
We are going to spend this Thursday and Friday preparing a new 121 Community Visit Rota to start from Monday 9th November. Our intention is to provide at least one 121 visit a week for each client whilst we are in this latest Lockdown period. Fun activities will be on hold for a bit so these visits will involve staff members meeting with individual clients for walks to chat about Covid related concerns and also to chat about things that have absolutely nothing to do with Covid, which we think is extremely important at this time!
We will finalise details this week and the relevant staff member will be in touch with you to clarify the plans for next week, however this is what you should expect from our 121 Community Visits starting Monday 9th:
- Walks will either be from home or a nearby park or green space
- We will be requesting clients to drive or be dropped off when possible to avoid unnecessary car transport, however 121 car transport is available if there's no other option
-121 Community Visits will be approximately 1 - 2hrs. If car transport is necessary, we will travel a maximum of 15 minutes to a walking location
- We will do our best to provide 121 Visits on the usual days a client receives support but will be in touch to organise this
- We need to ensure that all clients get in the habit of bringing their own drink on these sessions and also ensure they wrap up warm!
Hopefully this all sounds safe, sensible and achievable. We're doing our best to navigate the service through this ever changing situation but it really is quite exhausting! We genuinely value your feedback if there's anything we've failed to mention or if you have any questions or concerns.
Here is a useful link to latest Government Guidance: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/new-national-restrictions-from-5-november
As always, we again want to emphasise that we do not want anyone to feel pressured to attend these 121 Visits if they do not feel comfortable to do so. We would encourage people to attend to help reduce the likelihood of anxiety and isolation, however we understand everyone is managing this situation in different ways and hopefully it won't be too long before we are back delivering typical aebal sessions.
Thank you for your support and make sure you dedicate some time away from Covid thoughts!