26 carers of people with learning disabilities attended Reach Learning Disability’s first virtual afternoon tea in August. Thanks to funding from the Masonic Charitable Foundation/Nottinghamshire Masons and Persimmon Community Champions, Reach are finding new ways to support carers of people with learning disabilities while Reach’s centres in Newark, Mansfield, Southwell and Flower Pod are temporarily closed. For many older family carers it can be difficult to use online services; Reach’s support is helping them to feel more confident about staying in touch with others online and using platforms like Zoom. The project team, Catherine, Liz and our wonderful project volunteer Rebecca, delivered packs containing scones and other treats along with an invitation to attend a virtual afternoon tea via Zoom.
“A surprise packet delivered on my doorstep. A cream tea with a difference. Clotted cream, strawberries, delicious looking scone, strawberry jam, classic biscuits, pot pourri, tea bags, honey spoon, coaster, hand gel (very thoughtful), a note pad for a quiz when we Zoom later today and a packet of seeds. All this from Reach Learning Disability…what a thoughtful and wonderful gesture. It’s to thank carers for doing their bit. We are all carers…we should all be caring for one another. Thank you Reach for going the extra mile.” – Steve, family carer to Laura.
Catherine said: “Many of our family carers tell us they feel isolated and exhausted looking after their family member who is struggling to cope with the current situation. Funding has meant we can offer digital technical support as well as being able to purchase and deliver supplies to provide a focus for online activities. During the Zoom session I ran a quiz while we shared a cream tea which led to plenty of lively discussions about jam or cream on top! Ultimately, the activity gave people the opportunity to feel more confident about taking part in social activities online. We supported two parents to use Zoom for the first time; now their son will benefit from being able to access other Zoom sessions and online social activities we are running.”
Reach are continuing to find safe ways to welcome clients back to centres whilst continuing to offer ‘remote activities’ for people at home and their carers.
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