Covid-19 may have forced the centre to close their doors but please rest assured that it has not, and will not, stop ClementJames from supporting the vulnerable people that depend on them. Their dedicated staff team have adapted swiftly and put in place remote support for all areas of their work, including the following:
- The Adult Learning team have been teaching their classes online, including innovative lessons, such as a virtual tour of the National Gallery.
- The Young People's Education team are making pastoral phone calls to their homework club students, setting them challenges and supporting them with their academic work. These calls have been extremely effective. As one of the student's parents explains: "This session is the most work she has been doing all week! Thank you for your support, it really guides her through maths and is like a school day in one." So far the team have made 247 such calls to 151 students.
- The Employment Support & Advice teams have conducted 230 appointments, each an hour in length and resolved 109 issues.
- The Information, Advice & guidance service is highly in demand and is often an important lifeline for the centre's clients. They are able to support clients over the phone in understanding government information. They are also able to advocate on clients' behalf to the relevant organisations where necessary, including, housing organisations, Job centre Plus, foodbanks, and employers.
- The Wellbeing Support staff have been creating resources to support people with their mental health and wellbeing. They have organised food deliveries and have set up fruit and vegetable deliveries for a number of clients. The team has also been carrying out welfare checks for some of the centre's most vulnerable clients. They have recently launched the online 'This is me: belonging', creative activities and exhibition and are hoping to launch a virtual coffee morning, to reduce feelings of loneliness, in the coming weeks. The Reader group and Speaking group have also continued virtually. Please see the activity pack and information on the exhibition and activities here: www.clementjames.org/this-is-me-belonging---virtual-exhibition
ClementJames have received some lovely quotes from their clients during the lockdown period:
"I would like to say thank you to all of you for the information you have provided to us in this difficult time."
"Thank you for all the help and calls you have given me so far it has been nice talking to you and you always save me from boredom!"
In particular a client of the Clement James Centre said:
''A month or two ago I was very sick with this horrible virus and I had my four children at home. I felt that I couldn't look after them properly and I was struggling to be honest. I didn't have enough food and basic things and I knew who I could go to- you guys, ClementJames.
You have helped to get me food shopping and vouchers and you have helped the children with their homework. It has just been good to talk to you on the phone and hear your voice. You are there for me when I need it most. I will always remember that in my life.
ClementJames is amazing! You help me with everything. You are 10/10. You help with bills, my children, shopping, communication, so I am not lonely- really everything. The best thing is you guys, the people at ClementJames. You are friendly, kind and always helpful. We can't live without you, me and my family. ClementJames is just a building, it is the people who work there that are important, we couldn't do this without you. Thank you my darlings.''
Anyone interested in the activities of the ClementJames Centre can visit their website for more details.