We have all learnt many times over the past 18 months that a week can bring many twists and turns in this pandemic story that we’re all living. This past week has been another reminder as we moved from donuts to 5km limits faster than Slush taking off to check huts during morning parade!
It was great to read online the invitation from Yas McKenzie to come up with innovative ways to put a smile on the faces of a member who might live within 5kms of our homes. It seems that some posties have also inadvertently aided and abetted in some mystery deliveries of Somers Spirit Fun in recent days. It’s great to see these small but uplifting gestures of green, white and black connectedness.
If a week can have as many twists and turns as this past week has had then predicting the months between now and the first week of January 2022 is really crystal ball gazing. I take comfort in Prof. Tony Blakely’s recent comments that he’s hoping for a brighter community outlook in Australia by Christmas given vaccination rate trends. In the meantime all LSC & PH leaders and staff continue to respond to the twists and turns and share that cautious optimism for January.
So many hours of consultation and contingency planning have been crunching possibilities for viable safe options for our January flagship camps every possible opportunity to safely go ahead. These considerations have focussed on our camp facilities with respect to public health and accommodation industry settings including density quotients and the required infection control. Two significant influences on necessary decisions have been density limits of the Mess Hut and sleeping areas.
In response to these limitations, planning for Big Camps 2022 will proceed with a cap of 60 groupers and a total of 184 people at each camp. The creation of required ‘Camp Bubbles’ to reduce the risk of infection will also mean that there can be no visitors, guests or part time staff at either Big Camp. These limitations will bring some disappointment but we hope that members will understand that we are doing our best to give the camps our best possible chance of proceeding.
Georgie Birch, John Raphael, Cath Challinger and Wok Dunn are working hard with their teams and our staff to carefully plan the balance of preserving our ‘Somers Secret Sauce’ within COVID Safe requirements.
I am sure that I am not the only one who in recent weeks was riveted to the Olympic television coverage. The varying personal stories of individual olympians and teams overcoming the interruptions and adversity of the pandemic in developed and developing nations provided important reminders about perspective. The uplift of the inspiring and selfless acts of support for others mid race or mid competition brought to mind some of the spirit we have so often seen on the Games Field and the cross country course. The Paralympics is sure to provide even more perspective and inspiration about positivity and working to achieve personal and collective bests. So let’s continue to support each other and keep perspective as we move towards the key vaccination targets in the coming months and look to provide 120 groupers with the chance to enjoy the magic of Big Camp.
The announcement last Monday that all Victorians over 18 years of age can now access the Astra Zeneca vaccination was a welcome one and all members are encouraged to ensure they have protected themselves, their family, friends and fellow LSC&PH members through COVID immunisation. Let’s keep looking out for each other, for small and large ways to serve others and continue to support the planning for future Somers fun and fellowship.