Natalie’s Blog Part 4

Hello All,

Well the coronavirus has completely turned our worlds upside down and inside out and any future plans are now changing.

I am currently working from home, my hours are spread out throughout the day and evening so I can meet the needs of my children.

Distance learning is a whole new ball game for me and I decided to take each day as it comes. My girls are continuing college via virtual lessons which is a relief and one less worry, honestly I actually don’t think I could answer the A level biology questions right now.

I’ve been watching them as young carers and can see how important their break from their sibling was, so I have been encouraging them to take daily exercise or a walk on their own or together to give them an opportunity to breathe, refocus and talk to each other.

Teaching my son and working is an experience to say the least, I had to start by being flexible with my hours as he takes medication which means the first part of the day is a better opportunity for him to learn.

We sit next to each other so I am on hand to guide him, We have timers using Alexa so activities are no more than 15 minutes long and she tells him to stop, I give him a break and then use Alexa to remind him of next activity to reduce me seeming like I am nagging.

I have to hold conference video calls which can be interesting because our child/young person’s needs don’t stop just because we’re on a call. I found showing him a test video call helped him understand what I was doing and explained why I had to make these calls.

Don’t get me wrong, during a conference call he came in and started to talk to me about his idea for a Tik Tok video, and I have to remind him to eat and drink regularly and of course if the cat is in the same room I have children coming in for regular snuggles.

As PPV Manager we have had to make lots of changes and are now all based from our homes, but we haven’t stopped working though.

We have set up a support group which you can find via our Facebook page, please remember to answer all the questions to join the group.

PPV are in continual contact with all services and are reporting any issues our families are having, so please keep feeding back either via Social media, PPV support group page, PPV website or email.

We will share updates on services as soon as we have them, also please keep checking the Portsmouth SEND Local Offer –  or Portsmouth SENDIASS – for updates, information and support

We have set up a Sharing is Caring post if you’re in need of essentials and we are currently working on the technology to run our coffee mornings and webinars online. Hopefully we will see some results of this over the Easter break.

Our Shaping Better Futures (SBFT) and ND Coproduction groups are still running, we have been supporting test runs of  conference calls ready for upcoming meetings.

PPV will Still attend meetings using video/phone conference calls across the SEND Strategy, Health, Early Years, social care and PCF cluster meetings.

The staff at PPV will try to take time off over the Easter break, however we will still monitor social media and the PPV support group and will continue to share new information so you don’t miss out.

As of the 1st April I have been in my role as Portsmouth Parent Voice manager for a year and what an incredible year it has been, so thank you to all our staff, parent reps, families and Portsmouth Disability Forum (PDF) for your ongoing support.

Stay Safe