Pandemic lockdown reflections: a year on
By Margaret Harrison, Head of Cancer Support Services and Vicky Brady, Senior Health Care Professional
The Covid-19 pandemic has impacted everybody in different ways, and as the nation takes time to reflect a year to the day since the start of the first national lockdown (23 March), our team has taken a moment to pause for thought.
None of us will have come through this last year completely unscathed or unaffected – every one of us has made sacrifices, missed our families and friends, felt lonely, sad, frightened and also had moments of feeling that the future looks very bleak.
Many of us will know someone who sadly has lost their life to Covid-19 and wondered and worried if someone we love will become one of those growing figures on the news each night. But amongst all that we have all witnessed some unbelievable acts of care and compassion for each other.
As a charity, we have adapted and changed the way we operate so that we can continue to be together with you at every step. It’s been 12 months of change for everybody, not least for us here at Weston Park Cancer Charity, but we’re immensely proud of how our team has continued to support the one in two people who develop cancer.
Cancer hasn’t stopped because of Covid-19, so neither have we.
Our team is now here to help you in more ways than ever before. Our Cancer Support Centre may have been closed for the last few months, but despite this, since the start of the first national lockdown in March 2020, we have:
Received 4,350 telephone calls to our helpline – managed by our wonderful cancer support team
Delivered 1,168 We Care support calls – a new support service set-up to support anybody worried or distressed about disruption to cancer services by arranging regular check-ins with those who need us most. This will continue indefinitely
301 carers support calls for carers feeling isolated, concerned or in need of support
Losing someone to cancer is unbelievably painful – even more so during a pandemic.
The last 12 months have been unbearable for the many bereaved who have been using our helpline service for support. That is why, as part of our adapted service offering, we have also provided 186 bereavement support calls for those unable to access a support network of family and friends.
For some, not being able to see their loved ones at the end of their life has been particularly painful and will no doubt have long term implications in managing their grief.
In addition, there have been many family members and friends who have been unable to attend funerals to say their final goodbyes – this has also caused considerable distress.
For anybody struggling with these emotions or if you or someone you know needs help, advice or support we are still here. Our experienced healthcare professionals are available to help and support you.
Just call us on 0114 553 3330 to speak to our healthcare team.