On March 23rd 2020, as a result of the Covid 19 pandemic, the government announced a partial lockdown nationwide.
This resulted in Croydon BME Forum being placed in the unwanted but unavoidable position of having to shut down their two busy offices, further impacting on the BME community they support as it meant valuable face to face services could no longer be delivered.
While understanding that the needs of the community where likely to increase during this challenging time, undeterred, Croydon BME Forum quickly set about ways in which they could provide support to it’s members and the BME community in general.
Through the use of digital media such as WhatsApp and Zoom, Croydon BME Forum have been able to provide a range of activities, launch innovative ideas and offer support alongside partners, that have had a far reaching positive effect on Croydon’s BME community.
- Creating a range of online resources, including providing a weekly updated list of emergency numbers where the community could seek support.
The weekly delivery of culturally relevant food, essential to the over 60s and people who are shielding and unable to leave their houses.
- A fully packed, day-to-day, morning and evening Mental Health Awareness week programme that actually had to be extended into a second week.
- Working with Croydon Council to help ensure that the voluntary sector get much needed funding to deliver essential work to the community, as quick as possible.
- Allowing food banks to use one of our premises, to enable the crucial distribution of food to continue to those in the community who would otherwise go without.
- Hosting and delivering over 40 online zoom meetings that have enabled people to stay in touch and keep informed.