Navigating COVID-19 at Sinneave | May 1, 2020

Navigating COVID-19 at Sinneave – We are in this Together

Anxiety, depression, fear, the unknown…I’m freaking out!  What about my kids, my parents, my friends, my clients, family, work, health, finances??  These and so many more unanswered questions can add up to a strain on our mental health, impacting individuals and the organizations they are a part of.

The leadership team and every member of The Sinneave Family Foundation staff has had these issues front of mind as we navigate the COVID-19 pandemic. There has been a clear focus on supporting and providing resources to our staff who in turn are able to continue providing support to clients during this unprecedented time of need.

Like many other organizations, we have had to adapt to these rapidly changing times. We are in this together!  Below are 10 things that we have found most helpful during COVID-19 in enabling us to continue with the important work of improving the transition to adulthood for autistic youth:

  1. Employee Family Assistance Program – if you do not have access to employer benefits that provide mental health supports, be sure to check out what’s available through the Government of Alberta.
  2. Agile leadership – the planning and navigation skills of our leadership team shaped a new framework of priorities that outlines our continued work, accountabilities and commitment to supporting the autism community.
  3. To the extent possible, providing tools that enable staff to work remotely (hardware, software, ergonomic workspace and secure platforms for communication) has been critical in allowing for business continuity during the pandemic.
  4. A willingness of staff to adapt to new ways of providing service in a virtual environment, and to sometimes step outside regular accountabilities to support each other and the work.
  5. Encouraging all of our staff to stay involved both professionally and socially, as we navigate the hurdles of working remotely, social distancing and in some cases isolation.
  6. Frequent communication from our President.
  7. Connecting with each other regularly through virtual team meetings, one-to-one video conversations and phone calls.
  8. Maintaining predictable internal communications and engaging staff to share innovative ideas for new ways to relate to one another.
  9. Practicing self-care has been vital to our mental well-being.
  10. Doing our best to ensure that staff members know they matter, their health matters and their work matters. The difference they make in the lives of the community we serve is crucial.

The Sinneave Family Foundation is “virtually” open for business. The footings of the Foundation are solidly planted to provide the same excellent services as before, just in a little different form.

Sinneave’s commitment to the well-being of the team has created a sense of stability and hope, helped to calm nerves, and provided a positive mental health environment.

If you are looking for information or support during this challenging time, please contact our Resource Centre at 403-210-5000 ext. 2037 or email info@sinneavefoundation.org.  You will also find some COVID-19 information and resources listed on our website.

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