I write this just hours after Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s monumental announcement that the United Kingdom were entering a virtual lockdown.
These are truly unprecedented times for us all – our businesses, our communities and our families.
We are all fearful, but we must all heed the Government and medical advice around social distancing and self-isolation brought about by the coronavirus pandemic.
From the outset, may I praise our key workers who remain at the forefront of this crisis.
Our NHS workers, our care teams, the school leaders and staff who have brought about a new way of educating our young in rapid time. Also, the shops and small businesses in Haverhill who have stayed open to help keep our town going.
These are worrying times for us all. Our local businesses, something ONE Haverhill Partnership and Heart of Haverhill have worked so hard to support in recent times, will be very fearful for the future.
I urge them all to research all the various help that has been offered and to seek advice before they make decisions about their workforce and livelihood.
This crisis has also shown the best of all our communities. From residents collecting goods to donate to the elderly and vulnerable to the postman who contacted ONE Haverhill Partnership at the weekend asking ‘what can I do’.
Wellbeing webinars have been set up and Samuel Ward Academy teacher Tujan Sari has launched his own daily fitness You Tube video for students, staff and the community to get fit together.
These are just a few examples, of which I know there are many more. To support these efforts, ONE Haverhill Partnership has launched a ‘Community Support’ web page to promote all these efforts.
I make no apology for using the word ‘community’ quite a few times in this column. Never has this been more important and more apparent.
Whether it is trying to support our local businesses, who will need us more than ever in the weeks and months to come, or just offering a simple gesture to a neighbour in need.
Whether it is promoting your business working in a different way or whether you are an organisation offering digital help or support to residents and groups, please let us know.
ONE Haverhill Partnership will support and promote your work through its social media channels and relationships with the local media.
Please get in touch and tell us how we can help via firstname.lastname@example.org.
Above all else, stay safe and stay at home.