Today Fay Hough interviewed CEO Anthony Lowe of local charity Tapestry on behalf of Jon Cruddas MP regarding their current “lockdown three” operation.

Tapestry have been helping older people in the local area since 1949. They believe that every adult deserves the opportunity to live healthy, connected lives regardless of age or ability. Throughout the past two lockdowns Tapestry have run a tight operation throughout 2020 to make sure that adults in need were receiving hot meals and companionship. They have done a fantastic job and recently, with the support of their amazing volunteers, Tapestry delivered over 600 meals over the Christmas period including over 100 Christmas Meals. Their volunteers also supported the charity by making over 650 Care Calls to lonely isolated people in the community, which included multiple calls to those on their own, and at risk, over the Christmas period.

Jon Cruddas MP has praised the work of Tapestry throughout the pandemic and today Fay Hough had the chance to speak with Anthony Lowe regarding the newly announced lockdown.

Fay Hough: How does Tapestry plan to continue delivering vital services to the elderly community throughout the newly announced Lockdown?

Anthony Lowe: The lockdown is another huge strain on the people we care for. We worry the most about the long term effects these lockdowns will have on those we help such as lack of companionship, no face to face meeting with peers, reduced eating due to being scared to venture to the supermarket. We are particularly worried about those with Dementia, as these lockdowns have proven to have a detrimental effect on those suffering with the disease.

We care for over 200 adults. We will continue to make sure they have food deliveries, we will continue to make sure they are in safe and secure environments, and we will continue to make sure they have companionship. We have started new virtual hubs that provide virtual care to our adults. These hubs allow adults to have a virtual day of cooking classes or a day of crafts. Or it could be something as simple as listening to someone sing (virtual entertainment.) In order to make this service accessible to everyone we provide equipment for those in need. Equipment such as Facebook Portal and integrated WIFI is given to adults who do not have access to WIFI or webcams which means they do not miss out on virtual care.

Our newest push for lockdown three is to reach out to Havering residents asking for them to make contact if they know of any adult struggling to eat. The fear of going out has meant that some adults are missing out on food and simply not eating. We want to make sure that all those who need a hot meal receive one. We are ramping up our staff and trying hard to get the message out to our local community. We do ask for a contribution of £5 for two course meals, BUT – those in crisis (have low incomes, money issues, suffering from a bereavement, have mental health needs etc) do not have to pay. Every adult is individual accessed when they are referred to us. We never want someone to go without food because they worry how they will pay for it.

Fay Hough: How does someone get in touch if they know of a vulnerable adult who needs help?

Tony Lowe: They can contact us via telephone at 01708 796600 or via email at hello@tapestry-uk.org