Arena 80 Member Support – Covid 19

Dear Arena members,

I hope you are keeping well and managing to get outside daily to enjoy some exercise safely, especially when the sun is shining.
Please take time to read this email carefully (it’s long!) and don’t hesitate to contact me if something is unclear.
I am contacting you on behalf of the committee and in my role as welfare officer to check in with everyone and to remind you all that the club is here for you.  I am lucky to still be in full time employment,  although working from home, and receiving a salary!  However, the Committee are mindful this is not the case for everyone and we would like to take this opportunity to highlight some of the help available to those who may be struggling.
Aside from national and local support the Arena committee would like to reach out to it’s members who may experiencing financial challenges at this time.  If this is you or you know of a member who may not want to come forward themselves, please, please do contact me either by email or private message me via Facebook.  All messages will be treated with strict confidentiality and respect; any support will be mutely agreed by all parties.
The following websites might help you negotiate what is available.
For those struggling financially: 
National debt line.  Lots of information and self help tools to guide you.
Money Advice plus.  Brighton office: call 01273 664 000. Debt and benefits advice.
Foodbanks and Support .  Please check individual websites for referral information and opening times.
Brighton and Hove Food Partnership  This website has many links to local support and also for those who wish to offer help. The site also includes foodbanks without their own website such as Purple People Kitchen at Portslade. which includes Whitehawk and Shoreham branches. 07708 384906 07941 397648
Members may not necessarily be struggling financially but our mental health has certainly  been tested, I know mine has!
My student experience team at the Uni have put together this padlett board of support and information. It is accessible to all and has links to many free resources, mental health support such as Mind (9am – 6pm) and the Samaritans (24hrs)and stress related ideas like meditation.
You may also know that Shawn Buck and Steve McNealy have been organised weekly ‘Zoom’ catch ups at 7pm.  You will need to download the Zoom app but it is very easy!  Monday is a social get together and Wednesday quiz night.
Finally if there is enough response we would like to facilitate a buddy system for our members.  Some of us are stronger than others, some more gregarious and sociable, some private and alone.  If you would like some 1-1 virtual contact/support with another member then please let me know.  Equally, if you feel you have capacity to give support then again let me know.
I hope that this goes someway to connecting members and that if you are feeling isolated or in need you will be able to make contact.
All the very best for a safe and connected future.
Brigitte Groves – Arena 80 Welfare Officer