Light at the end of the pandemic tunnel

Kairos director Mossie Lyons reflects on how we’ve come through the most testing of times and what we’ve learnt about our resilience as a community, a service provider and as individuals.

Dare we hope? Well, there are some reassuring facts. Most important, in my estimation, is that all staff have been vaccinated (twice); that there is a system in place to vaccinate all new admissions to Bethwin Road and Linden Grove, with most current residents already vaccinated. And we have learnt the lesson of ‘hands, face, space and fresh air’. Common sense and awareness with regard to personal safety and that of others are still vital as restrictions ease. Keep alert. Be considerate.

We’ve come through a difficult and testing time. We have coped. In fact, we have done better, we have managed the situation with courage, fortitude, adaptability, skill, teamwork, accountability and with huge generosity. Take time to reflect on how you have responded over the past 15 months in terms of these qualities. Be proud. We all kept giving and we found ways to reach out and continue to offer care and support to those in our services. Innovative strategies ensured that programmes kept going; workers went above and beyond the call of duty. I would also like to remember those residents who found it too hard and left Kairos – I hope you are well.

For me, I will never forget the evening that Shawn McCarthy (trustee) rang me to tell me of the death of our friend and fellow Trustee, John O’Sullivan from Covid-19. Trustee meetings over Zoom ensured constancy of governance and were a great support to me.

So, looking back, I thank everyone for the contribution you have made in helping Kairos get through this past 15 months. We cannot ignore or deny that those months have been tinged with sadness, marked by supreme effort, sometimes struggle and that this has left a residue of tiredness, even exhaustion.

However, here we are, still in the service of the most vulnerable and, more than ever, we are standing strong, together.

The future – well, of course, there is uncertainty and worry around a virus that will continue to mutate and will never go away. However, there is hope.

We know we managed and we have learnt that we are able respond to events appropriately and, to some degree, fashion our own destiny. Business did continue and will continue. All Kairos Community Trust services are now operating fully.

Thank you, all.

Mossie Lyons

PS: I’ve just heard the wonderful news from Serina Aboim, Trustee, that she has been elected as governor for Guys and St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust for community services in Lambeth and Southwark. Congratulations, Serina, and thanks for all you have done for Kairos over the past six months.