Lifeways CEO Justin Tydeman: being optimistic for 2022
You may, like me, find your heart sink a little as the newspapers and screens fill up again with COVID-related news and tension.
Amidst all that anxiety and noise, I want to share some information and thoughts which make me optimistic for 2022.
The Lifeways team, and the people we support, have been pioneers through this pandemic.
Firstly, by finding incredible new ways to work together to create fantastic support.
And secondly, by being pioneers in vaccination. ‘Priority Groups 1-9’ may seem like ancient history now, yet from January 2021 the whole organisation showed brilliant commitment to the brand-new vaccination programme.
As 2021 comes to a close, we can see what effect this commitment has had.
March 2021 was an important turning point for us. It was the date when second doses were being administered to colleagues and people we support. Like so many teams prior to March 2021, some individuals had sadly passed away whilst infected with COVID.
But since the start of March 2021? Our COVID tracker shows that not one person (colleague nor person we support) has died with COVID, despite more than 6 million further cases of the virus in the UK.
I think that fact is incredibly moving. We should be very proud of the role that everyone has played in making that possible, through vaccination and continued infection control. I know that there will be more difficult stories to come, but just this fact should give us confidence as we look toward 2022.
Vaccination is a personal commitment which is massively appreciated by me and everyone who relies on Lifeways. Mandatory vaccination is now in place in our residential services, and will be extended, if parliament votes in favour, to all our services by 1 April 2022.
In our residential services, which have been through this change, our colleagues took enormous effort to make their decisions regarding vaccination.
Just 31 colleagues took the decision to leave, which is a personal decision which we acknowledge. We also recognise the vital support those individuals provided before vaccines were available, and wish them well for the future.
I also know that our team will continue to show commitment and openness to the vaccination programme as we move through the extension of mandatory vaccination. Thank you so much.
Lifeways is proud of what has been achieved in 2021. Wishing everyone good health in the festive season, and for a successful 2022 just around the corner.
Lifeways is the UK’s largest team of support professionals providing support for adults in the community. Lifeways support adults with diverse and complex needs. These needs include autism, learning disabilities, acquired brain injuries, physical disabilities, and mental health conditions.
As the supported living sector’s largest team of professionals, Lifeways’ extensive experience and national reach mean we deliver extraordinary support to adults, enabling them to live fulfilling and independent lives in the community.
Our 11,000 colleagues currently support almost 5,000 individuals who live in our 1,500 supported living and residential services across England, Scotland, and Wales.
Find out more about how we change people's lives at: www.lifeways.co.uk
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