Unchanged in a Changing World

Life goes on… but Covid changes everything. We go about our everyday lives; getting up each morning, doing daily activities, and going to bed. We speak with friends and family. But how we do this due to the pandemic and Lockdown #3 changes everything. Where we can go? For how long? The need to connect virtually still makes life possible, but different.

At Restore, we continue to support our tenants who have lost their homes, for a whole host of reasons, many outside the control of the person being affected. We have 35 tenants housed 9 properties across York. It is such a blessing to have this provision. In 2020, we had 29 tenants who moved forward in a very positive way in their lives to live in the community. This is a transition not possible without the dedicated support of our Housing Support team. Even when tenants move on from our homes, we continue to provide them a further 6 months support to make sure they thrive.

Of course, as in life, nothing stays the same.

In October we welcomed a new Chief Executive Officer, Duncan Craig. Duncan joins us from Harlow, Essex. He loves moving to York – such a beautiful city! He worked extensively with the homeless running soup kitchens and overnight accommodation. He also ran the Harlow Foodbank, so understands the impacts of poverty. In addition, he worked with divorced families to help them find a pathway of reconciliation. He studied a Theology and Mission Degree at All Nations Christian College (www.allnations.ac.uk). Previously he had a career in Wealth Management at Barclays (www.barclayswealth.com) and The Environment agency www.gov.uk/government/organisations/environment-agency).

In January we welcomed Kevin Birch as our Fundraising and Marketing Officer. He lives in Manchester. Now that’s one of the positives of Covid… Restore has a more flexible employment framework made possible by the extended use of Zoom. He joins us with extensive experience of fundraising, social media and IT consultancy. Welcome to Kevin! You will see more blogs and social media updates with Kevin’s arrival.

Running Restore with the increased restrictions of Covid Lockdown has been a challenge. We need to keep our team of Becki, David, Hannah, Jonny, Louis, Maria, and Paddy safe. We need to keep our tenants safe. We have been able to do this throughout the Covid pandemic. No tenant has gone unsupported. No staff member has been unsafe. Of course we have to do regular testing, and plenty of hand sanitising!

Christmas 2020 will always be remembered as a difficult time for many. Not being able to spend time with loved ones is a sacrifice we all had to make to stay safe. Thankfully, for all of our tenants, they had the best Christmas  possible. We received food hampers from The Environment Agency. So many of our wonderful supporters gave generously either food items or presents. It was a delight to be so busy receiving such kindness. Thank you!

2021 will be a tough year, but with the Lord’s provision, and the continued help of our supporters, such as you, we will continue to help the most vulnerable in our community unchanged in an ever changing world.

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