Rachel Travers, Amaze CEO, rounds up latest news for winter 2020
Welcome to my last round up of 2020. As I write, we have just come out of Lockdown #2, but since Sussex has been moved into Tier 2, it might feel like little has changed. We are hearing from many parent carers who feel ground down by the ongoing crisis and who tell us their resilience is being eroded. Some say they are living in fear of the phone ringing to say their child’s school bubble needs to isolate at home, and others have children who have still not returned to school or college.
Our latest newsletter includes a more detailed breakdown of what families tell us about their ongoing ‘Covid Challenges’.
Our SENDIASS team has also created a really useful guide to ‘Understanding Home Education’, as we know that many of you are currently home educating out of necessity or choice, or considering doing so.
Mental health and wellbeing is at the forefront of all our minds right now – not just how to get through this next period of restrictions but also how this will affect our usual festive celebrations. Whilst news of viable Covid-19 vaccinations is very hopeful, we know for many families with children and young people with SEND, this also prompts questions around safety, access and who will be prioritised and when. We all wait to hear more on this and will share it when we do.
Here at Amaze, we’ve been working with our staff to identify and celebrate the things that keep them going. It seems our top strategies include some fresh air every day and sharing silly video clips! Our ‘Looking after yourself this Covid Xmas’ guide has lots of other ideas and links to some of the best resources out there to help you keep sane over the festive season.
Some of our Amazing Futures young people have been telling us how bored they are of staying in their house and/or how scared they still are to mix with people and get out and about. So it’s great that they feel confident enough to come and see their friends at our Covid-safe activity sessions in Brighton, Eastbourne and Bexhill. Find out more about our peer support activity groups here.
November marked Disability History Month 2020, and we got a real boost from reading about some of the most influential people who have had an impact on disability-related UK laws and equal rights https://assets-learning.parliament.uk/uploads/2020/11/Disability-History-Month-booklet.pdf.
Finally, whilst it’s hard to think about anything but Covid-19, I ask that you take a few moments to complete our ‘Amaze Strategy’ survey about what you would like us to focus on or develop over the next few years. You might also win a £50 Love to Shop voucher, just in time for Christmas.
It’s been a long, tough, year but I hope you can find some energy to celebrate the approaching festive season, and share some precious time with a few supportive friends or family if you feel that is safe for you. So this December, Happy Bodhi Day, Happy Hanukah, Happy Christmas and Happy Hogmanay from all of us at Amaze.