I’m sitting in my garden writing a blog. It’s lovely – my tulips are out in full bloom and my cat is stretched out at my feet, lying in the sunshine.
The beginning of week 4 of lockdown and I, like many other people, am becoming accustomed to the new normal. I am working the equivalent of 2 days per week (instead of my normal 3) but the hours are spread across 5 days – responding to emails, doing social media, updating the Trustees, dealing with new session enquiries, organising the finances and so on. The rest of the team are currently furloughed, awaiting the date when we can re-enter homes and get back to work. Naturally, we are all anxious that many of the people we see might be classified as vulnerable to this virus and we are worried about the impacts. We are absolutely loving getting emails from the homes saying all is well, and we have everything crossed it stays that way.
Running a small charity can be a challenge at the best of times (albeit a wonderful and creative one!): funding challenges, vans being stolen, keeping up to date with best practice and so on. Never did I foresee this peculiar scenario and it is so hard to see how it will impact the charities’ long-term outlook. If the Treasury is forthcoming with the promised Furlough Scheme on April 20th, we hope to ride out the storm. But many other people, businesses and charities may not be so lucky. We remain optimistic though – before we furloughed, we took a couple of days to finish up on our sessional reports and catch up on some admin tasks that hopefully means we can get straight back into business once we get the green light. We honestly can’t wait to get back and see people (and hopefully they will be delighted to see us too!)
It’s a strange world – part happiness at being able to sit in my garden and work (technology permitting), having a daily ‘Boris Walk’ with my daughter and really enjoying not doing the school run and drive to and from work. Life has a real sense of calmness to it. But it also has a small cloud of anxiety hanging over it – are the people we support going to be ok? Might the virus get into homes we support? Will all the care home teams we meet be ok? Are all our friends and family going to be ok?
Whilst it is a very peaceful time it is also unsettling. Staying at home and keeping distance is hopefully going to win the day.