My Life with Mosaic Clubhouse Brixton under Lock-down

On Monday 23 March a full Lock-down was required and all operations within the clubhouse building ceased. However staff knew the members were vulnerable due to their health and living circumstances. So Reach out which was always part of the clubhouse ethos evolved.

This Reach out was important to me as I live alone and due to my mental health I am not able to work any longer, so when all my Mosaic activities were stopped I had nothing to do most days.

Like everyone who had a phone I received updates via text, Than I got one about holding a virtual unit meeting, I had no idea what this meant but clicked the link to join in.

Am I glad I did? Yes whole heartedly. They began with Employment and Education unit meetings at 3pm using the Zoom platform which I had never heard of before. But it was just so wonderful to see other people and interact with them. Some members I knew better than others but enjoyed them all. The meetings were hosted by different staff members who had the agenda or daily unit tasks to be carried out. E and E’s focus was on the ‘In the Mo’, the in-house magazine which has now gone digital and published weekly.

A few days later the Business and Admin unit started to have virtual meetings at 1.30 pm. I belong to this unit, but it was agreed I and others could attend both. Attendance to meetings vary some go to both like me others just go to their unit and some choose not to come back which I think is a shame as they could enrich the meetings and have some fun.

Once business is done, if time we have a quiz which is great fun particularly when no one knows the answer and it becomes a guessing game. So they are light hearted.

"...without Mosaic I dread to think what would have happened to my mental health"

But one day I felt low and asked if any one else lived alone a few hands were raised and some said like me they were lonely at times. This was important as one of the staff knew I wasn’t my usual cheery self and contacted my engagement worker. I now have twice weekly phone calls with her. This not only alleviates my aloneness but gives me a chance to talk about what is happening for me which would not be appropriate for the unit meetings. The unit meetings has evolved slightly so that at the beginning, members and staff have a chance to check in with the group and if a member seems troubled they will offer to contact them afterwards. It is good to see caring in action in this way.

I am lucky to have a smart phone and computer so could easily participate in these activities, Through the Zoom platform we have been able to hold both Policy and Board meetings. In the latter we heard from other members which revealed members would regularly receive phone calls from their Engagement worker. And when phone contact failed then postcards were sent to reach out to members. Eighty cards were written on one day by one staff member.

I am just so grateful that Mosaic remains active during the lock-down and has found different ways to reach out and engage its members, without Mosaic I dread to think what would have happened to my mental health.

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