Trying to maintain a ‘sense of normality’ may be difficult in these challenging times. Continuing those small, practical avenues of support and connection will keep contact and information flowing and anxiety levels down. And that’s exactly what C2 hubs are doing.
In Townstal, Dartmouth, their aim is to keep the lines of communication open between service providers and residents and work together, efficiently and effectively to keep their community well.
Their Friday Hub has changed shape, according to guidelines, to manage risk and keep everyone safe. It will now function as a drop-in. Food will be available to take away and any donations can be left outside. Dartmouth Community Chest will be coordinating deliveries, with help from other organisations when needed.
In Winthorpe, Jodi Bradbury has started offering the lunch club via home delivery of meals on wheels. With a ring on the door and a cheery wave from the bottom of the garden.
“I am also happy to help any vulnerable people who are isolated in Winthorpe with shopping or just a chat if needed,” she said.
That’s a sentiment reflected by Amelia Bilson co-ordinator of Middleport Matters Community Hub in Stoke-on-Trent.
“These are unsettling and uncertain times. Lots of people are anxious or fearful and we would like to help you in any way we are able while still following current guidance to protect the public,” they said.
“If you, or someone you know, are self-isolating and would appreciate a phone call to check how you’re doing and have a friendly chat, please send us a message and one of our team will give you a call regularly.”
A Better Cliftonville (ABC) Community Partnership is doing the same.
“If you think a neighbour would benefit from a friendly voice and maybe some grocery collection – do check in on those that would benefit from your help at this time,” said ABC.
Still connecting people
As life goes on, C2 Hubs are still connecting people to the information and support they need. In Townstal the TQ6 Community Partnership has met to plan a co-ordinated response with service providers inc. Dartmouth Town Council, Churches Together, Housing, Food Bank and Dartmouth Pantry to find the best way residents and the hub can contact them and the issues they would be able to help with.
In Winthorpe, although the recently opened Winnies Community Lounge has closed its doors, Jodi will still be on hand to help with housing information and forms, but now over the phone messenger email.
The TR14ers young people-led Community Dance Team are a pretty ingenious bunch too, and they are ready to continue their dancing over Skype & Zoom. Around 40-60 youngsters have been attending free dance workshops since 2006. When you’ve got to dance, you’ve got to dance!
Across the UK C2 hubs are sharing their information, tips, expertise and experience with us and each other, so we can all learn lessons. It’s a great reflection of the ingenuity and resilience that our Hub network has nurtured.