As we know, the development of the novel coronavirus pandemic has impacted many key social resources and charities and placed restrictions on their ability to deliver key services. We have been similarly impacted.
In response to the pandemic, we have refocused our attention and efforts to best acclimate to the new social restrictions. Our face to face work will pause pending updates from Public Health England about when it will be safe to resume. We understand that the majority of our service users will be in some way immunocompromised and therefore are aware that this return to a normal service may be delayed beyond that of the general public.
To adjust to the potential of prolonged shielding measures and social distancing, we have taken our regular peer support meetings online. These will be run in partnership with Maggies and will continue to be a safe space for those of us wanting to connect throughout the crisis. We appreciate that online connection is not the preferred method for every person and are exploring other options but this appears to be the most immediate and effective way that we can deliver support for the time being. For further information on these sessions click here.
We are in close contact with a host of key LGBT community leaders and the NHSE LGBT Health team to stay up to date on the progress of the virus, public health measures and the community response. These regular meetings also allow us to raise our concerns and visibility of our beneficiaries and broader community. If you have a story or concern you want to share, you can do so via our usual contact details (link to contact page).
We are also exploring the impact of this global health crisis upon our community via a survey developed with oversight from our trustees, key NHS colleagues and community members. This data will be used to feed back to larger cancer charities and the NHS on what our community is facing and what kind of support we need. To complete the survey click here.
Despite the pandemic, it is important to remember that we are not alone. We know that isolation is an issue in our community and we appreciate that not everyone will be feeling safe in the place they are shielding or socially distancing. There is a network of services available throughout the LGBT sector and we are committed to signposting anyone to the support they need so if you have any problems, concerns or requests for support please get in touch.
We hope you stay safe.
We are here if you need us.
We look forward to seeing you again.