How quickly things change....
Following the Government briefing yesterday, all groups in the centre are now cancelled until further notice. This includes older people's activities, weekend and family activities, gigs, films, discos...
The centre is still open and operating, but we will be working with local people, neighbourhoods and organisations to help identify and meet local needs as they emerge.
As guidance becomes clearer we may be able to reopen some things to ensure, for example, people self isolating can get out and have a cuppa or access advice, etc. We are awaiting guidance and will let you know.
If you are coming to the centre, please come in via the Small Hall and wash your hands before moving into the rest of the building.
NEIGHBOURHOOD MUTUAL AID
As a first step, we are keen to support neighbourhood mutual aid groups establish themselves - neighbour helping neighbour.
A mutual aid group was set up very quickly in the Hall Royd neighbourhood yesterday. It was immediately joined by people from almost every local street and the whole neighbourhood was leafleted within 24 hours. Things are starting to happen. It's that easy!
There are pre-existing active neighbourhood associations in the Norwoods, Higher Coach Road, Saltaire and Hirst Wood.
If you would like to get something going in your neighbourhood it is really easy. We have simple templates: a leaflet you can adapt to letterbox, an online form so people can get involved, computers you can use to design your own stuff and a photocopier you are free to use if its a new neighbourhood group. We can also help with setting up an email address, Facebook and WhatsApp etc so you can easily communicate, share and organise without the need for face to face meetings.
We also want to ensure that any available resources for Shipley are used to best affect, solving the real and changing problems people are facing, so please chip in if you are aware of local concerns or needs as and when they arise.
Needs will change over time, so please consider "what do you need?" an open question we are always asking.
Let us know how we can help – we are here for you.
Most of all we wish everyone good health, and let's see this through together.
on behalf of the whole team
We are working hard to ensure the Kirkgate Centre remains open for everyone, but are also mindful of the large number of vulnerable people using our building and rising concerns about transmission. We will be implementing further changes to how the centre operates during the next week.
Our aims are to:
1. reduce risks and safeguard vulnerable people using the centre
2. reduce risks of transmission among all users, volunteers and staff
3. avoid situations which may risk creating unnecessary additional pressure on the NHS and social care services.
4. help people stay well informed with accurate information and guidance
5. support older and vulnerable people where we can to prepare for an anticipated extended period of isolation. Preparation includes for both the practical and emotional duress extended isolation may cause.
Changes from Monday will include a new single entrance to centre via the Small Hall during the daytime. This is far more spacious than our lobbies and has a hand washing facilities and space to store buggies etc. From here, everyone can access the entire centre including the cafe with no contact with door handles etc., helping us reduce risks for everyone.
The cafe will be moving to card payments only & some room allocations for groups will change. We are already implementing extra cleaning procedures across the entire centre.
We will review all activities on an ongoing basis as advice changes, and will let everyone know via notices and social media.
At the moment larger weekend events are still running but please check with organisers and on our website etc before coming along. Everyone is reminded to wash their hands on arrival and during their visits, and to carry their own tissues.
Due to panic buying, our own supplies of sanitisers and sterilising fluids are very limited, so we will not be providing alcohol based hand rub for everyone on arrival. Instead everyone will be asked to wash their hands in line with national guidance on arrival and during your visit.
If anyone has feedback on best practice or concerns about any aspect of the centre, please always come and let us know. Guidance is very limited and every organisation is having to make the best of what knowledge and advice is out there, without unnecessarily cutting off vital social contact for people or unnecessarily raising people's anxiety.
And finally, we are a very small organisation with the equivalent of just five members of staff covering everything we do. Looking after our staff and volunteers is a top priority for us and we may need to reduce or close some activities based on their own circumstances, regardless of wider public advice. We will keep you all informed of any additional changes as soon as we can.
Best wishes to everyone.
Kirkgate Centre 01274 580186