August 21, 2020.

What has Covid meant to our Vinnies work? 2020 has been a challenging year to everyone & Vinnies is no exception. We began the year as normal until the appearance of Covid when suddenly we went from face to face contact with people in need to phone interviews & contactless delivery of food parcels. Lockdown became tighter & there were further changes. Because of the age & vulnerability of most of our our members we worked with less volunteers & on limited days until finally closing for approx 6 weeks.

As the situation improved we recommenced with limited volunteers & limited services then came Stage 3 again & we returned to emergency calls only. Stage 4 has seen us reduce services yet again but with the increased Government assistance most of the needy people in our Parish area are ok for now. We will continue to evolve as Covid does & hope to be back to more normal or ‘new normal’ activities by the end of the year. As with other members within the Parish of St John’s, our group has had bereavements & illness within our families & it has been a difficult time without the usual amount of support being able to be given.

The parishioners of St John’s have always supported our work for which we are very grateful. Even though Masses have had limited numbers in attendance during Vinnies Winter Appeal you still managed to support us with financial donations. May God bless you for your generosity. Despite Covid we will still have Christmas Cards & Columban Calendars available for sale in December. They will be available after Masses as usual as long as Masses have resumed as normal by then. If not, then we will organise another form of delivery for anyone wishing to purchase.

Further information will come through the Parish newsletter either at mass or online in November. Once the increased Government assistance runs out & many people are left with less income we are anticipating a rush on our services as the year ends & 2021 commences. We would welcome anyone who would like to join our team. Perhaps you would just like to know more about our work. You can contact us anytime via the Parish Office.We pray that everyone stays safe during the course of this pandemic.

Our Covid Story written by Mary Murtagh – President, SVDP Frankston East Conference

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