Tiny Car is mighty but even Tiny Car can’t survive having the internal light on for a weekend. So guess who is currently stuck in Stevenage waiting for Halfords to open so they can purchase a new battery. All through lockdown Tiny Car was resting, recouping its strength after the shock of doubling its mileage in a year. Tiny Car started first time. Tiny Car only needed some brake pads and things and off we travelled again. But woe, brought down by the simplest of things!
I don’t know if you have been out and about, Tiny Car and I have done a small amount of exploring and we know that the roads are getting busier but still most people seem to be staying in. We are still all dancing in our living rooms and going for our morning walks. Clear skies greet the end of the storm and ever the optimist I hope that we are steadily moving towards a solution, a vaccine, but those dates keep moving ever outwards, first we thought we would look to return to the old ways in June, then we started to plan for September, now it’s looking like next year before many of us return to the office, if we ever do. I know I’m not writing anything that you won’t have read in many places but for the Chrysalis team at our meeting last week it was the first time we had started to think about a year rather than a few months.
Soon we will be holding our fourth Beyond Lockdown – how can Chrysalis co-exist with Covid-19 inviting all our group members to come and get involved in planning the future. To think about how we can bring back some of the essentials of meeting face-to-face while keeping people safe. Talking about how people most want to receive our support and to come together. Is the virtual world now the real world?
I’d better get typing quicker, I need to go to Halfords and be back in time for lots and lots of supervision sessions. Have I mentioned recently that Chrysalis is always interested in volunteer counsellors and counselling supervisors? Do you know any? Why not give them a poke and see if they are interested in volunteering for us, take it from me there’s few vocations more satisfying than working with people as they discover and define their authentic selves.
Last week I met Ramses Underhill, talking about his vision to create LGBT+ supported living in Southampton. Watch this space for more information about the Our House project and if you are an LGBT+ affirmative domiciliary carer and looking to work for an organisation which puts LGBT+ people at the heart of what they do then check out ACS Plus. How amazing is it that Southampton will be one of the first places in the country to have a dedicated supported living establishment for LGBT+ people.
As always the weeks pass so fast. We kicked off the CRM project and I started a Management Apprenticeship. Phew! That’ll keep my busy in my spare moments. My head is now full of SWOTs and management techniques. As someone who is essentially making it up as they go along, and has been for the last 20odd years, it’s nice to get some formal training. Empathy, congruence and unconditional positive regard will only get you so far.
Even more exciting though is my conversation with Russell which lights the fire under our conference plans for 2020 live streaming into your offices and living rooms. Building on our theme of demistifying gender diversity and empowering individuals and organisations to move beyond the drama and into acceptance, understanding and yep, normality. Save the date: Chrysalis Conference Gender Identity Matters 2020 is coming on Friday 27th November. If you want to get involved then drop us a line, firstname.lastname@example.org
This week is the last week of the month and as always it’s supervision week. Catching up with lots of the counsellors, finding out how things are going and yep, you’ve got it, checking in with them to see if they are able and willing to go back to some face to face work. Many of our group members are now receiving counselling for the first time, something that lockdown enabled, as we were able to finally cross borders and boundaries and make counselling accessible even if your group counsellors had not free slots or you couldn’t make it to a group because of the time it was held. We don’t want to lose that freedom, that flexibility, that connection that you and your counsellors have built. Whatever happens Chrysalis will continue to put our group members and their wellbeing first in all changes that we make.
And the most important thing about this week is that Paeton and Callum, with their incredible support driver Em, will be completing the Tour de Trans – it’s not to late to get some sponsorship in and to follow them on our social media. Looking forward to the photos and to welcoming them back when they finally return to much needed rest back here in Hampshire. What an epic achievement. Who’s up for joining them next year?
Right! Off to Halfords. See you back in Southampton next week, I hope that you enjoy your bank holiday weekend.