Coronavirus Response

UPDATE - 25 March 2020

As you are all aware, there have been significant developments over the last few days in national and state responses to prevent, as much as possible, the spread of coronavirus across our communities. The services provided by Marymead are generally considered ‘essential services’, and as such, we will try, as much as possible to continue to support the vulnerable children, young people and families we work with throughout this time. We are now employing various strategies to this end including:

- Development and update of Marymead’s COVID-19 Business Continuity Plan & Policy for services for clients with wellbeing the highest of concern to Marymead
- Abiding by social distancing practices (now 2 metre radius for each person)
- An increased cleaning of all surface and facilities
- Minimising face- to-face contact wherever possible and using video or teleconference facilities as an alternative (eg: Facetime and Skype)
- Using Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) for unavoidable personal contact and providing training on hygienic practices for Direct Care staff

We are very aware things will continue to change rapidly, and will continue to communicate frequently with all staff and clients to reassess needs, whilst also considering any change in direction from government. At this stage, we are pleased to note we will continue to provide most of our services, however, to ensure we meet the current health regulations, some programs operate under alternative models of service delivery in order to promote the safety of staff and clients.

The services, which will continue with some minor variation in delivery, include:

- Out of Home Care Case Management, Clinical Support, Family Contact and Family Preservation will minimise face to face meetings and use video teleconference options as an alternative.
- Individual and Group Counselling, and Contact will minimise face-to-face meetings and use video teleconference options as an alternative.
- Alternative strategies will be implemented for Changeovers to ensure social distancing is maintained.
- Short-Term Accommodation and Day Programs will continue but will implement alternative strategies to ensure social distancing is maintained.
- NDIS Support Coordination will use video teleconferencing as an alternative to face-to-face meetings.
- MULCH and Kids’ Companions will implement modified models of service delivery and alternative models are being explored for LEGO Group and Dungeons & Dragons. Autism Centre will continue as normal, using video teleconferencing as an alternative to face-to-face meetings.

The only service to be placed on hold in the short term is Boundless Buddies as social distancing measures are not able to be implemented in this context.
Azure Community Centre is currently closed. The Social Club has been encouraged to continue with alternative/virtual delivery of activities away from this space. 

We will continue to monitor and adapt and will communicate these updates as best possible should you be accessing our services/events. We thank you very much for your patience and ongoing support as we try to navigate this extremely unusual situation.


UPDATE - 17 March 2020

This week, Marymead, along with other organisations have provided a Coronavirus Business Continuity Plan, which maps out our response to Coronavirus and risks posed by it. We know that this will be a living document and will update it as the pandemic unfolds.

Supporting children, young people and families, including those who are most vulnerable across Canberra and the surrounding NSW regions remains at the forefront of our intentions. Coronavirus is a new challenge in our communities and we will continue to problem solve, as we have for the past 53 years, to work to ensure our services and support programs are delivered across our communities.

We continue to work closely to the advice of the Australian Government’s Department of Health and have adopted social distancing policies. We also request staff, visitors and residents adhere to the self-isolation requirements as set by the Australian Government. As at 16 March, our social distancing policies include:

  • Not conducting face-to-face meetings for groups of more than 20 people in the foreseeable future. We will utilise technologies to facilitate virtual business meetings or work to achieve an alternate method of onsite delivery (ie: splitting groups)
  • In situations where our people or clients are isolated and connecting remotely, we will put in place technology solutions for connection
  • Reinforcing best practice hygiene standards at all our sites, as well as increased cleaning measures to ensure a clean and healthy working environment.

Please note, that these are purely precautionary measures to preserve the health and safety of all our people and are not in response to any specific risk identified.

In line with health advice we also request that people who are unwell with cough or fever or other respiratory symptoms do not attend Marymead premises or events. 

As at today, there is no impact to our services and we are re-assessing all large events (more than 20 people). We will however monitor and adapt and will communicate these updates as best possible should you be accessing our services/events.