Operation Mirror - The Bridge for Heroes response to the COVID - 19 pandemic
The Bridge for Heroes made a decision early on in this pandemic, not to cease operations and furlough their staff as many others have done, but instead adapt and innovate their services to provide crucial and at times critical support to their beneficiaries. Operation Mirror is highly diverse and flexible, responding to the needs of the beneficiaries at the current state. Support such as:
• Phone support - Staffed helpline for incoming calls, and dedicated outgoing welfare calls
• Low-Risk and High-Risk house visits - Carried out by highly trained and IPC equipped SAM response teams
• Supply drops - providing decontaminated crucial supplies to those who are in isolation
• Video conferencing and Remote Activities - managed video chat rooms for our beneficiaries to socialise and communicate, as well as hosting live cookery workshops, art lessons, religious activities such as Sunday morning church service, mindfulness and more
• Veterans Community Channel - a dynamic and free channel with news, advice and other information about Operation Mirror as well as hosting a variety of remote activities
The official statement from our founder Mike Taylor:
"The current situation involving the veracity of the spread of COVID-19, also known as Coronavirus has presented a challenge like no other. As you have heard from the media and the government, we are all having to adapt to how we go about in our daily lives in order to help slow the spread of the virus to others.
As such many organisations have chosen to shut down their operations and furlough their staff. Such was a viable option for The Bridge for Heroes, closing down our contact centre and stopping operations until further notice, but we chose not to do so.
Instead, we have worked round the clock for the last 30 days to convert and adapt our support services, and as such we have set up Operation Mirror. This operation has involved training our existing volunteers and staff in Infection Prevention and Control techniques and procedures, Nuclear, Biological and Chemical (NBC) training provided by an ex British army NBC instructor, as well as peer to peer support over the phone or using social media channels.
Once fully launched we will be supporting over 1000 beneficiaries per month, remotely as well as personal house visits from our specially trained COVID-19 response teams with all the necessary prevention equipment and decontamination procedures.
Our beneficiaries depend on our support, and as such, we felt a duty to continue providing help and support, even to those who have been exposed to COVID-19 or are suspected of being symptomatic.
Our specialised teams of volunteers and staff will continue to work around the clock to help protect those most vulnerable and help alleviate the already strained public services. If you would like to volunteer in any capacity, please contact us asap. We are all in this together, and by working together and looking after each other, we will get through this and win the battle against COVID-19."