Dale Hoffman – Wellbeing Director

For many people in our own community and across the world the impact of COVID-19 has been significant and our thoughts and prayers continue to be with those that have had their livelihood or health affected by experience.

Recently I have wondered if as a society we will truly learn from what has taken place in 2020 or will we quickly forget about it once it is over and return to our previous ways. Our challenge as a society is to learn and take something out of each of our experiences.

I wonder what we will take out of the COVID-19 experience and will we be able to look back on this as a time in our lives that strengthened us and changed us.

As I reflect on the events of 2020 to date, I have come to learn and realise some of the following things and this is only a small sample of my thoughts.

  • I have realised how much I appreciate the freedom that we have in our beautiful country and how I have possibly taken that freedom for granted.
  • I have learned to become comfortable with being uncomfortable and through this I have become a stronger and more resilient person.
  • I have realised how important my relationships really are to me. I miss catching up with my friends and family and going out to dinner.
  • At the same time, I have learned to be content with having time alone and I have come to appreciate that.
  • I’ve realised how busy my life use to be and more importantly how that busyness is actually not sustainable and needs to be re-assessed.
  • I have realised how adaptable and resilient our young people and our staff are.
  • I have realised that whilst Microsoft Teams and Zoom meetings have served a purpose, they quite simply cannot replicate the feeling you get of being with people in a room and that sense of deep human connection.

A saying I have heard many times in the past few months is ‘I can’t wait for things to get back to normal’. When I hear this, I think to myself; Was life before COVID-19 really normal, or had we just conditioned ourselves to believe that is was normal?

If we heave truly learned anything from 2020, then we will take this opportunity to create a ‘new normal’, that is better, more sustainable and one that each of us will truly appreciate.

So, I ask you: What have you learned and realised? And how will this shape and change who you are and what you do?

Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me or seen in me—put it into practice. And the God of peace will be with you – Philippians 4:9