A few words from Emma
Emma, our director of services and grant-giving shares her thoughts about shielding;
“I’m booked in” my mum proudly announced to me last week. “I’ve spoken to them over the phone and they’ve got everything in place, so I’m going”. In normal times my mum would have her hair cut and coloured very 3 weeks, a grooming regime which quite frankly puts my half-baked efforts to shame and makes me question whether we are indeed related. So, it should have come as no surprise to me that her priority as shielding comes to an end is a good trim. But what was striking, as she explained to me in detail the safety measures her hairdresser has installed, was the sheer undeniable joy just the thought of a haircut gave her, excitement which was truly palpable. So as I reflect on the experiences of my own family and also those shared with our health care professionals over recent months on our helpline, I want to acknowledge the sacrifices those who have shielded (and their loved ones) have made – not seeing family and friends, living with the uncertainty of just how long all this will last, remaining at home and feeling left behind as the rest of society began to explore the outside world again, being referred to as vulnerable, a label no one ever asked for and one which seems to have stuck.
Despite the continued uncertain times we live in, my hope for the future for anyone who has shielded is that you are able to experience the very thing that brings you joy – whatever that may be – and that society views you as valuable not vulnerable, and what you need to keep you safe is respected and put in place.