The arrival of Covid-19 and consequent lockdown has meant the last few weeks have been unsettling, challenging and worrying for us all. All of the staff and volunteers of St Christopher’s have been working hard to find the best and most efficient way to respond to this crisis and keep supporting the many patients who need us. Here are some of the ways we’ve been managing to keep going…
We’re supporting some of the most vulnerable people in the community and their safety and wellbeing is our top priority. That’s why, to keep them safe and well, we have introduced phone and video-conferencing support. It gives patients and families peace of mind knowing that expert care is only at the end of the phone and that there is no need to break social distancing guidance. Of course, the team continue to visit and provide hands-on care when needed and are equipped with Personal Protective Equipment for the safety of them and the people they are caring for. We’re also:
- Continuing to care for patients on our wards who need more specialist care
- Supporting more than 1,260 patients in the community
- We’ve started a Community Aid and Deliveries service which has been incredibly busy. Our drivers are making up to 30 trips a day, collecting and picking up medication, food and vital equipment and taking them to patient’s homes – all with great kindness and unwavering optimism
- We were grateful for a large donation of food from Waitrose which went to 21 people in need
- Our Wellbeing Team have developed online arts, exercise, qi gong and breathing classes (to name just a few!) for patients, staff, volunteers and the general public. You can find out more here
- The Young Adults Group has continued virtually and bereavement support continues via phone and post
- We’re still supporting 74 clients with their personal care and completing around 125 visits a day in the local community.
In March we took the difficult decision to close all 26 of our charity shops and cancel our fundraising events, in line with government guidance. As you can imagine, this has meant that our cashflow has suffered. The St Christopher’s eBay shop is still open online and the Fundraising Team have been busy coming up with exciting ways for you to stay active in lockdown and raise some pounds for the hospice!
Want to find out more and how you can get involved? Visit www.stchristophers.org.uk/stepup. If you’d prefer to support us without signing up to a sporting challenge we’d be grateful for anything you can spare.
Please visit www.stchristophers.org.uk/donate to send us a gift and let us know you’re thinking of us.
A call for volunteers
We have been humbled and delighted by the amount of people who have come forward to help us during this difficult time. More than 268 local heroes – thank you so much. Among the volunteers are 26 retired doctors and nurses who are still registered and able to support our teams with hands-on care. Other volunteers are already working on the wards, changing beds, assisting with meals and doing so much good. We rely on the support of over 1,300 good-willed individuals to keep going and, at times like this, it really does mean the world.
We have been humbled and delighted by the amount of people who have come forward to help us during this difficult time.
We asked – you answered
We put out a request on social media for Personal Protective Equipment and we have had a phenomenal response. Schools, businesses and individuals have made or donated masks, goggles, aprons and gloves. Thank you so much – it has meant so much to our staff knowing the overwhelming support they have from the local community.
- Our talented staff have been teaching NHS staff, care homes, GPs and other healthcare professionals using virtual learning sessions. The team are responding quickly to requests for support and doing everything they can to make sure that wherever people are they are getting the best care at the end of their lives
- All staff have had training around supporting patients with Covid-19 and we’ve set up a dedicated support service, Hear For You, that staff and volunteers can use at anytime.
We have no doubt things will continue to change over the coming days, weeks and months but we want you to know that we will be here for you and your loved ones. Do keep an eye on our website and social media pages for our latest updates, as well as news on ways you can get involved.