18 March 2021
The latest advice from government is to stay at home as much as possible, however you are now able to meet others outside and there has been a change to distancing rules for young children. Read the latest update from the Scottish Goverment here.
In March last year, before the formal restrictions, we had taken the decision to suspend our home visiting and group support and this continues to be the case. A difficult decision, however we feel it is the best way to ensure families, volunteers and staff remain as well as possible and that we don’t create additional risk.
We are currently reviewing the government’s proposed phasing out of ‘lockdown’ to better understand the support we are able to offer to meet the needs of families whilst keeping everyone safe and reducing any risk of spreading the virus. We will continue to update families, volunteers and supporters directly and through our various channels as things change.
Our decision to change how we work is essential and we have planned for this eventuality. We repeat that it is not ideal, however the wellness of everyone in our community is a priority and, whilst we always want people to know we’re here when they need us, it will be in a different way for a while.
We have transferred to remote support by telephone, through online groups and virtual meetings. The majority of this work continues to be undertaken by our staff team. We are considering more ways for peer volunteer to connect with families they support too.
Families who need support can continue to connect with us and we have remained open to new requests for support through partners and colleagues in health and social care, education and community services, as well as from families directly. Maintaining connections and relationships will be important for many. In these difficult times, we are understanding more about new collaboratives in local areas who are responding to very local needs, helping us to connect families to any further help that’s around. We are also very aware of protecting everyone during these difficult times, so will only recommend organisations where we understand their service and governance. We have also committed that our staff will have time to volunteer within groups or other community initiatives where they can.
Our hubs in Glasgow and North Lanarkshire remain closed with all staff at home, undertaking work and caring for their loved ones too. We encourage contact with us through our website, by email or phone – details here.
How you can help
We are grateful for donations received to date to enable this approach to work well. In such a fast moving situation, the need for technology to maintain our important connections with many who are already isolated and/or facing significant difficulties is vital, as well as making the right adaptations to be as accessible as possible. We’re delighted to have been able to provide families with the resources they need to stay connected. We also want to make sure that families we support have the things they need to keep well, like connectivity, utilities and basic supplies. To help us maintain this support, we welcome any further contributions through our donation site here.
Please remember to follow the national advice, which is updated regularly. We can all play our role in keeping everyone as well as possible and save lives. We have already given advice to families we support, our staff and volunteers based on the national guidance from NHS Scotland, available here and the Scottish Government, available here. We encourage people to seek information about the virus and actions to be taken only from these official sources. You will also find information on seeking help for all those in Scotland, regardless of residency.
Further advice and updates
There is helpful information and sources of help on the Parent Club website, including how to talk to your children about what is happening.
Advice about work, sickness and benefits can be found on the UK Government site here.
Information on the closure of schools and childcare options for those who are deemed to be ‘key workers’ – and the definition of ‘key worker’ categories – can be found directly at the Scottish Government site here. Local Authorities are responsible for support whilst schools are closed, like free school meals. Find your Local Authority here.
If you are facing financial difficulties, a number of sources can help out, including local authorities and the Urgent Assistance Fund from our friends at Aberlour. We may also be able to help with essentials, so if you need our help to apply to another source or you think we can help you, remember to get in touch with us.
The Scottish Domestic Abuse and Forced Marriage Helpline remains available 24/7. If you need advice and help, you can find it here.
We are grateful to our many volunteers who commit their time and experience to our work. We value volunteers and volunteering. If you’d like to find out more about the contribution you can make to the national response, check out the Ready Scotland website here.
We would also like to draw your attention to the increasing reports or fraud, where people are being encouraged to share their personal information via text, phone and email from those pretending to be officials responding to the crisis. Others have had visitors to their home. Please take care of yourself, your family and your personal information. You can find advice here from Police Scotland.
We will update our website and social media should the situation change and, should further action be required, we will communicate directly with families, our volunteers and partners. Thank you for your support.