Along with everyone else, L’Arche Manchester will be facing a challenging time over the coming weeks. We are re-thinking how we support people, to reduce the risk of infection. We’re being really creative, with lots of FaceTime chats, activity sessions over Skype, prayers over the phone and sharing silly videos on WhatsApp. Technology is really helping us to continue to create community despite having to be more separate physically.

Sadly, four of our overseas assistants have already had to leave us to go back to their families. And we know that others may get sick and have to self-isolate, which will put a further strain on our houses.

This means that we will have challenges in making sure that everyone gets the support that they need, and we will be looking for people who can help us. We know that many people are currently unable to work in their usual jobs and may have time on their hands, and may be able to help.

In particular, we will need:

  • Full time, part time and temporary casual assistants to support our fabulous assistants in our houses. We would especially love to hear from people who already have care experience / qualifications so they can get going quickly, and ideally people who live in the Withington or Rusholme areas.
    • We will need some people very soon, and others over the next few months
    • Some may be with us just as long as we need to cope with this crisis, others may be interested in becoming a L’Arche assistant for longer
  • People who can help with house cleaning and laundry and possibly shopping
  • People who can support our assistants by having a regular phone or Facetime chat to check how they are, lend a listening ear and offer encouragement. In L’Arche, we call this ‘accompaniment’, which means ‘walking with’ people and supporting them through their journey.
  • Anyone who can offer any sort of activity sessions over the Internet. We already have plans for a virtual music group and virtual yoga. Would you be able to lead an exercise class from your living room? Or a mindfulness session? Or a prayer / meditation session?

We’d also love to hear your ideas of other ways you might be able to help – maybe things we haven’t even thought of ourselves!

If you, or anyone you know, would be able to help, please contact us? If you are interested in any roles that involve direct contact with people, then we would need to chat with you about your own plans for social isolating, and would also need to complete a DBS check. We would provide any training you may need.