The fun and laughter has returned

At last, this week there was good news for the Social Eyes gang up at Harding Avenue and The Hub in Parkgate. We read so much about the poor experiences in the social provision settings that it’s time that the good experiences were celebrated.

An amazing and emotional day Monday 5th April 2021 heralded the reopening of our doors again for full day provisions.

The day went so well, friends reunited and a glimpse of normality returning. The timetable is still somewhat restricted but the new temporary timetable is action packed and allows safe, fun days to unfold.

It’s an exciting chapter for everyone at Social Eyes not just the guys and gals but for many of the parents/carers it’s a welcome respite from caring. A whole year of trying to explain why their charges cannot meet up with their friends, cannot go out and why their routine, which is so important to them has been disrupted. A chance to put their feet up and have a little me time.

It’s been a challenging year for everyone both physically and mentally. But how do you explain this Covid mentality to a child in an adult body. How many of us have missed the going out to work and even time away from our loved ones to recharge our batteries? The daily visits to Social Eyes were for many their only outlet away from home; the natural progression from school to a job is not an option for them and their social life revolves around their day at Harding Avenue and the Parkgate Hub.

There are daily struggles for the parents/carers who rely on the Social Eyes support chat line/room and I would like to share with you some of the comments that have been posted this week.

Rachael’s mum: – I would just like to say a huge thank you to the fabulous Green Team for making Rachael’s first week back a very happy one. We were unsure that we would get her back has she had become settled at home, but what an enormous difference in her.  Rachael has come home full of laughter and very vocal it’s a great relief to us that’s she’s so happy to be back and that’s down to the fabulous Green Team and the buns she made were delicious xx

Michelle’s sister writes: – Michelle had a challenging week at home and we have come to realise even positive change is difficult for her to manage. She is looking forward to regular attendance though and Social Eyes is the happy place for both of us!!! Roll on next week. New chapter well and truly sorted and we will never forget how amazing the Green Team have been all through the lockdown and are still! Everything else should be a breeze after Covid!

In Lewis’ own words, “I enjoyed that” and “happy now.”

Richard’s mum: – It’s lovely that everyone is so happy to be back at Social Eyes, our Rich is over the moon about being there for full days as well.

Footballer Josh was up before his alarm and in the shower and good to go. Josh did at one point catch the dreaded virus but he had a massive smile on his face when he returned to Social Eyes, it’s been a long few winter weeks.

Laura was the same as Josh, except her bag has been packed since the beginning of lockdown ready for her return!

Sam’s mum wrote: – We really need and look forward to a break from Sam – and he loves to have a break from my nagging. We love how the Social Eyes team are so aware of both the physical and emotional needs of the whole family and try to accommodate our wishes wherever possible. Thank you.

Oliver’s mum wrote: – Oliver is so happy to be back to the Magic of Social Eyes. There is something very special about Claire and the people who work with her. They are such an inclusive group with something special for everyone.

Some are still staying at home until after their second jabs and it is going to be more challenging to get activity packs out to those, but we promise you we will do our best every week to touch base with you, just as the Team did during the lockdown. They delivered each week an activity pack to each Social Eyes member, birthdays were still marked with cards and cake, Easter eggs were distributed and Easter bonnets produced.

The Green Team are all feeling more positive, looking forward to brighter days & new memories to be made. They are so proud of this chat / support group and thank them so much for all the wonderful comments.

It’s been a huge week for all concerned, lots of emotion, busy days and to see the careful planning unfold, with friends reunited and happiness all around it’s safe to say I believe we are all feeling very happy to be back.

Our colourful slogans are on the railings at Harding Ave and who could forget our fantastic summer 2020 up at St Josephs Junior Football Club ground the KCM Arena @ Stubbin when we rocked in the open as the buildings were too small and we all learnt how to welly wang!!

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