Jen and I have put together care packages for all our volunteers and participants, including Covid-19 supplies (face masks, toilet paper, sterilizers, paper towel), chocolate and chips, activity books, and some Covid-19 resource materials, including a mental health and resiliency workbook. We provided curb side drop-offs at people’s homes, giving us an opportunity to connect in person, from a safe distance. We have several folks from the program in the St. Malo area, which was a fun opportunity for a road trip to visit out of town! We started book clubs with three of our circles, which has been a positive way to fill time, generate discussion (no small feat when everyone is stuck at home with not much to update on!), learn about new authors, and discover circle members’ different qualities and interests. While physically distancing, these books clubs allowed us to stay socially connected!
Following the guidelines set out during Covid-19 has given Circles of Support and Accountability (CoSA) staff the challenge of connecting with core members and circle volunteers in new ways. Natalia Ilyniak, program director for CoSA in Manitoba, tells of a couple of ways they have found to maintain connections through this time: