Natalie Mallia

Skye Harvey Community Connections – Individual

Organisation:

Bay & Basin Community Resources

With so many people living alone, BBCR Social Groups are a chance for participants to get out of the house, enjoy their community, have fun and catch up with their friends. When COVID-19 lockdowns started and group activities were cancelled, BBCR’s Lifestyle Activities Coordinator, Natalie Mallia was immediately concerned for the emotional and psychological well-being of her participants.
Natalie sent out care packages to everyone with treats and activities to do at home. She also worked with families to set up regular Zoom sessions so they could remain socially connected as a group. Some of them had no prior experience with computers and they were both delighted and amazed to see the faces of their friends on the screen.
Most importantly, Natalie spent countless hours on the phone making sure she called and checked in with every participant during every week of lockdown. She put no time limit on the phone calls, the participants could speak as long or as little as they liked. They spoke to her about how they were feeling and their fears around COVID, they shared memories, chatted about current events and had a laugh together.
Even now participants still tell Natalie how much her phone calls meant to them through the lonely days of isolation. The team at BBCR believe Natalie should be recognised for her dedication, initiative and compassion. During what was a difficult time for everyone but especially our older community members, she went above and beyond to ensure her participants felt supported, listened to and connected.

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