Mid-Week Update from St Johns
Date: October 21, 2020
What a grotty day! Still, means that I’m able to write this without
thinking it would be better to be outside.
What news? First of all (with thanks Graham for the pic) just a reminder
not to get to church too early on Sunday, because will be celebrating the
clocks going back with a little lie in.
*Rob has just emailed me to let me know that it’s taking a bit longer than
he had hoped to edit the concert, so he’s asked if we can wait till next
Friday to have it on Zoom. I’ll send an update next week with Zoom
Winter Night Shelter*
I’m going to a ‘virtual’ meeting tonight, so I will be able to update
everyone more accurately next week, but just a quick summary, so you know
roughly what will be happening. First thing to say, is that it will look
very different this year, as we won’t be using the halls: this is a direct
response to the Covid problem. Instead, the YMCA team who organise the
shelter has received funding to rent the two flats above the Methodist
Church at the end of the Broadway for 3 months. Each flat has 3 rooms, so
the shelter will house 5 guests, and the 6th room will be used by the
volunteers. I think the organisers are going to say that volunteers from
the more vulnerable groups will not be able to stay in the flat – and I
already know of quite a few people who won’t be able to help this year
anyway, as they are already looking after other family members, and so I’m
pretty sure that our volunteer group will be a lot smaller this time round.
The idea is to have 2 volunteers on each shift, and 3 shifts a day, running
from 8am-3pm, 3pm-10pm and 10pm-8am the following morning. There will
also be a permanent ‘warden’ (this position has also received funding) who
will be looking after interventions for the guests and trying to sort them
out with housing. We will have to man the shelter from Sat am to Sun am,
from when it opens (either end of Nov, or beginning of Dec) to the end of
December, which will be 4 or 5 weeks. We will provide the Sat evening
meal (for a much reduced number, probably 8), and breakfast and lunch will
be organised by the warden and will just be food in the fridge/cupboards.
I’m currently unsure whether we will be able to field enough volunteers to
be on site, although I think we could probably cook for England, so we will
find out tonight whether other venues are in the same boat. (Another
thing that is making me feel a bit miserable, apart from the rain!)
On a more cheery note, thank you Anthea for sending some Autumn colour from
the Vernell Estate – it’s all looking incredibly lush considering we’re
nearly at the end of October.
Hope to see you on Sunday in a distanced,
not-talking-to-you-at-all-to-be-safe kind of way – we will have just got
back from Sussex, where we are going to look at my parents through the
windows as if they were an exhibit in the zoo – Gosh, I’m so grumpy this
week, everything seems wrong – I suspect that means it’s probably me!