8 JulAn insight into life in lockdown

Our Butterfly Home continues to remain in ‘lockdown’ and our staff, and children, are adjusting to their ‘new normal’. We do not know when this will end, but we are thankful that our children, our staff and their families are all safe and well.

Initially, only our nurses and ayis were in the home; caring for the children, cooking, cleaning and keeping the home running. Over the last number of weeks we have been allowed to bring other ‘essential’ staff members back to work in the Butterfly Home for specified periods.

Here, Emily (pictured), the director of the Butterfly Home, gives some insight into what life is like living in the Butterfly Home during lockdown.

8th July 2020

“The management work in the Butterfly Home, is always busy and this does not change just because COVID-19 is spreading across the world. We are busier than ever now, learning to adjust to working from home and relying on technology to communicate with each other.

All of the staff and children remain in lockdown. The children cannot go outside to play and enjoy the fresh air in the park, they could not see any new things in the world; but are looking at the same faces and surroundings, day after day.

All the staff leave their own homes and stay in the Butterfly Home for 24 hours a day, for a minimum of at least 15 days. They miss their own families and friends, they could not sleep well and eat well because of the limited conditions within the home. Our home is designed for 18 children to sleep in, not an additional 12 adults! So space is a little bit of an issue. Regardless of the issues, the ayis take incredible care of the children and the children remain happy. 

The ayis are fearful, they get bored, they are anxious, and they are tired. There is no ‘downtime’ for them. Even when they are ‘off’ they cannot leave the home, but need to find a quiet space (which can be difficult in a busy home!) to have some ‘time out’. We constantly reassure the ayis with information about the virus and how to overcome their fear with tips on how to protect themselves. Our priority is keeping our ayis and children safe. 

The delivery companies could not send the parcels to our organisation, instead our staff collect them on their way into their rotation and the process of disinfection occurs before they are safely opened in the home. Our day to day work in the Butterfly Home continues, we need to continue the audits and the ‘behind the scenes’ activities to keep the home running effectively. 

We look forward to the days when we can have volunteers back for music therapy and other social activities. We encourage all the staff to bring the children out to the corridor to play, to do exercises, dance or sing. The days are long, but they are filled with joy.

We already have been in lockdown for over 5 months, and we are not sure when it will finish. Difficulty is always with us. But we never give up. We are waiting for the day when there are no new COVID19 cases around, waiting patiently for those fresh flowers to bloom and for when we can ‘open up’ our doors again to the rest of our staff, volunteers and visitors. Until then we will continue what we are doing, stay safe and make every day happy for the children.”

2 comment

  1. susan wood on: July 14, 2020 at 2:18 am

    You are all very special people, doing a great job with your lovely children at the expense of your own homes and families. I hope you all stay well and the children continue to bloom and thrive. I am from Ireland, originally from England, and have followed you for a long while. Your home is a very beautiful place and you deserve the very best. Thank you from the heart for all you do x

    1. Naomi on: July 29, 2020 at 3:16 pm

      Dear Susan,

      Thank you so much for your kind message and warm words. It is so rewarding for us to know that wonderful people such as yourself follow us and support our work!
      Warmest wishes,
      Butterfly Children’s Hospices

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