We want to do our bit to restrict the spread of the Delta variant so, whilst we are definitely moving towards ‘normal’, we are taking a cautious approach to opening up fully.
Young people needing mental health and wellbeing support will now be able to come into the centre more easily, see someone in school or, if they prefer, have a telephone appointment. We are now seeing more referrals than ever from parents, GPs and CAMHs (the Children and Adolescent Mental Health service) and we are extremely grateful to the Friends of the Yeatman Hospital who have awarded us funding to deliver more one-to-one support.
Our learners who are involved in our English and Maths programme will continue to come into the centre for sessions spread throughout the day or continue to learn online which some young people prefer. We’ve been through a very busy exam period with over 25 exam passes so far so as we say good bye to our successful learners who are now able to go off to college, university and start apprenticeship we are looking forward to welcoming a lot more new people this autumn.
Our young parents’ groups are back up and running as normal. The young mums (and occasional dad) and the children have had a lovely time over the last few weeks, meeting up in person and trying to catch up on development time lost in isolation for their children. We’ve had lots of referrals from the health visitor teams and we are now able to do home visits again for those who need them.
Our ‘old-style’ drop in sessions have not been running since the pandemic began and from September the Friday afternoon slot will be formally replaced by small targeted group work. We are resurrecting “Bekah’s Kitchen”, the Friday afternoon cooking session which will now run as a regular six-week project for those under 18 (or still in sixth form college) with participation by invitation only. In addition, the Discovery Project social group will start in the autumn for those young people whose lives are marred by anxiety.
As you will know, the ventilation in the centre is poor. So, in an attempt to avoid ‘overloading’ the building with people, staff will continue to work flexibly combining time in the centre for face to face work with working from home. We are delighted to say however that the building and the main telephone line (01935 814496) will now be manned four days a week (Mondays, Wednesdays, Thursdays and Fridays) – that certainly feels a bit more normal.