A Rocha UK's work during the Covid-19 pandemic

18 May 2020
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18 May 2020, Comments Comments Off on A Rocha UK’s work during the Covid-19 pandemic

A Rocha UK are committed to the well-being of our staff and volunteers and to assisting our supporters and churches as much as we can during the challenging time. Our thoughts and prayers are particularly with those whose loved ones are vulnerable or ill, those who are ill themselves, or who are unable to earn, as well as those working in the NHS, in the social care field and other key workers.

A Rocha UK Office

To protect our staff, volunteers and the wider community, our office based staff and interns will remain working from home until we can provide safe space to work at the office, incorporating social distancing guidelines etc. We do not expect this to be before mid June. We are able to send out small quantities of leaflets, but are unable to send out larger quantities of resources or Eco Church plaques for the time being. We are sorry for these delays and thank you for bearing with us.

For any enquiries, please continue to get in touch via email: uk@arocha.org or by telephone: 020 8574 5935.

A Rocha UK’s core programmes

We will continue to operate our core programmes – Eco Church, Partners in Action, Reserves and Wild Christian – in a form adapted to the crisis:

> Eco Church – With staff working from home, we are able to send out small quantities of leaflets, but are unable to send out larger quantities of resources or Eco Church plaques. For those who have pre-purchased Eco Church plaques, we are sorry for the delay in receiving your plaque; our suppliers, Grassmarket, have suspended their production for the time being. We will update those churches who have already purchased a plaque when we have further updates.

We have now decided to close the Eco Church app temporarily to new registrations and award submission / processing for the next 6 weeks from 18 May due to capacity constraints in the team arising from furloughing a staff member and the need to do some important development work behind the scenes with our remaining capacity. Existing users can continue to log in and work on surveys up to the point of being ready to submit an award but we will temporarily suspend new user registrations. We will be able to offer only limited email support to the Eco Church community during this time. For any Eco Church enquiries, please continue to get in touch via email: ecochurch@arocha.org. 

Eco Church autumn conferences will be held in St Albans on 10 October and Manchester on 21 November at North Trinity High School. Booking details to follow.

> Wild Christian – We have been producing a fortnightly email (normally monthly) for individuals and families for the duration of the lockdown period (April and May) to help our supporters maintain a connection with nature during this difficult period. Please do sign up here and share this resource with family, friends and church community.

> Partners in Action – All of our Partners are currently closed to guests and groups and many hope to re-open in part or in full by September 2020. Scheduled events from June are subject to change and cancellation. Please check our Partners’ websites for the most up to date information. Our Partners’ survival depends on guests and events and many are struggling financially during this difficult time. Please join us in praying for them. Click here for recent conservation updates from our Partners in Action. Some of our conservation team are currently furloughed. For any enquiries, please contact A Rocha UK’s Head of Conservation, Andy Lester at: andy.lester@arocha.org.

A Rocha UK’s Nature Reserves

Work parties at both our nature reserves are postponed until further notice. Unfortunately we have had to cancel our long planned Supporter Days and Church Demonstration Days scheduled to take place at the reserves this spring and early summer. We hope we may be able to reschedule these to a later date this year, depending on the length and severity of the Covid-19 restrictions. Please look out for details in future eNews and on the web.  

Foxearth Meadows Nature Reserve

A Rocha UK supports restrictions on non-essential car journeys during the COVID-19 outbreak and the Foxearth Meadows car park is currently closed. In line with government advice we are constantly reviewing access arrangements and will provide a further update by June 1st. We are sorry for any inconvenience and hope you understand why we have made this temporary decision.

Foxearth Meadows is still open and can still be accessed via Public Right of Way footpaths. We advise entry in family groups or with one other person when social distancing.  If you want to find out more about access please e-mail: andy.jowitt@arocha.org.

Wolf Fields Nature Reserve

Due to social distancing restrictions, and some volunteers being particularly vulnerable to infection, all volunteer work parties have been temporarily suspended. Kailean Khongsai, Wolf Fields’ Reserve Manager continues to maintain our nature reserve in Southall. Managing the reserve without assistance is a huge task. Please do contact kailean.khongsai@arocha.org for more information.

Help A Rocha UK to continue connecting churches and families with nature and God during this crisis. Please consider donating to our spring appeal, to enable us to provide key services now and develop work for the future: https://www.justgiving.com/campaign/spring2020

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