As part of CLDF’s new way of connecting with families, children and young people during the coronavirus outbreak, over the past few weeks we have been holding digital Coffee & Catch Up and HIVE Hangout sessions.
These sessions have been an opportunity to catch up with friends, meet new liver families and chat about everything that has been happening lately, from being in lockdown to sharing ideas for schooling your children at home.
So far, we have held five Coffee & Catch Ups including individual sessions for Scotland, Northern Ireland and Wales. Young people have had the opportunity to take part in eight HIVE Hangouts for both younger and older age groups.
The CLDF Support Team share their highlights:
Michelle – Head of Support: “Having the opportunity to see families who we often only see at clinic or over e-mail is wonderful. It’s so lovely to enable parents and children to share their experiences with each other and listen to their concerns and hopes for the future. We want to continue this even when we move out of the current situation to enhance face-to-face engagement with our families and increase their chance to chat and share with other liver families across the UK.”
Kate – Scotland Support Officer: “Seeing some familiar faces, meeting new families virtually and all coming together to share experiences, laugh, talk and support one another was a fantastic experience and I’m really looking forward to many more”
Louise – Young People’s Digital and Engagement Officer: “Having the opportunity to see the young people on Hive and Hive+ Hangout has been amazing. It is lovely to catch up with the young people every week, play games, have a chat and have some fun in these isolating times. It is great to hear them share their experiences with each other. The platform is growing each week and I love the fact that these young people are starting to make friends and feel comfortable to tune in each week. It is the highlight of my week!”
Here are some thoughts from some fabulous parents who joined us:
“A happy and friendly meeting, supported from the comfort of your own home.”
“It was lovely to chat with you, Kate and Louise, and with all the lovely liver mums! Such a good idea to set it up and I wish there had been opportunities like these over 20 years ago when A was first diagnosed, it really helps to hear and share stories with others who understand.”
“Loved our NI families chat on Friday. Great to see Michelle and meet Kate – stay safe everyone.”
Here is what one of the young people who joined a HIVE Hangout thought of the experience:
“I love joining the Hive Hangout every week because I get to talk to other people like me and make new friends. Also, it’s super fun I always have a great time!”
We’re looking to provide themed and structured information webinars over the next few weeks, further Family Zooms and Kate is planning to hold regular sessions for Scotland. So, keep an eye on what is coming up and join us for these digital events! Information on what we have planned and when will be released soon on social media.
If you have any creative ideas you want to share with us about how you would like to meet the team and catch up with others, we would love to hear them by email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Stay safe, stay well and stay happy. We hope to Coffee and Catch Up with you soon!