For Adrian, COVID-19’s impacts have made his daily routine somewhat more of a challenge but he is inspired by the resiliency his clients show.
"It’s been harder with CV19 because as one of the BGF support workers who doesn’t drive, I have to take public transport, which means being very conscious of social distancing. I was transferring at Central station the other day and usually I would sit for 10 minutes and look over my schedule or notes, but you can’t do that anymore, so things are very different. With that said, we are very lucky that our clients are very resilient."
Part of Adrian’s work has also changed, as it now involves educating some of his clients on the risks associated with COVID-19 and ensuring they are, for example, aware of social distancing protocol. Throughout everything, however, Adrian remains grounded and makes sure that he has time for himself when not working.
"Managing the emotional ride has been a challenge. I’ve been good about self-care which I think is important for anyone still working during this time, so while I might power through my day, I take time at the end of the day to reflect and relax."
The social wellbeing of his clients is a priority for Adrian, who sees to it that clients with little means of communication in isolation have their needs met.
"One of our clients who has no internet access and is very reliant on community for his everyday care and social interaction has struggled under these restrictions, but I have been able too provide him with books, DVD’s and music to help keep him occupied and that has made a big difference."
COVID-19 has severely impacted the most vulnerable in the community in many respects, and Adrian views BGF and other community organisations as very important figures in the drive to reduce negative outcomes and improve their lives. For Adrian’s clients, these organisations have been great sources of support in this difficult time.
"In my work I spend time in public housing estates and it is there that I think community can do more to help the marginalised. There are AOD issues, financial and health issues that are exacerbated by CV19. Walking around I see that they are especially vulnerable and very much on the edge. It does give me comfort to know that there are organisations like BGF out there doing what they can, but we can do more.
Our clients are super resilient and are very well informed, so there have been no major pressing concerns for them relating to CV19 of late other than wanting it all to be over. I think BGF is going the extra yard all the time and for many of our clients we are a major part of their routine and lives, so it is important for that to be maintained. I can see even more now, through this CV19 pandemic, how valuable BGF is to the community we serve."