The conversations that transpired from Indigo Eats, alongside the feedback on various social media channels we were able to inform our next steps. One of those has been the launch of Indigo TV. I’m sure a BAFTA is calling next year for some of the team’s performances! A TV Guide supported by an Activity Guide is released every week for Early Years, Out of School Care and Youth services. Please see the examples below:
These offer a range of online videos from Indigo staff with fun learning activities appropriate to each age and service and linked in to relevant national and local guidance, rounding off the end of the day with a bedtime story from a member of the team. The video below provides an example of our bedtime stories for children in our Early Years services.
Indigo TV is also helping maintain relationships with those not participating in Indigo Eats, it is strengthening our online Indigo community and supporting our families to provide meaningful, fun experiences for their children whilst at home, that will help continue their growth and development in a wide range of areas. So much focus goes towards closing the attainment gap across all Indigo services, Indigo TV and our Social media channels have been crucial in maintaining at least some of the work with the majority of our families. We recognize that not all families have the resources to access online activities and are looking at a variety of ways to overcome that including providing data vouchers and hardware loans. Importantly though, it is so easy to see the value this will have beyond lockdown in strengthening that partnership with parents in home learning and support.
What About the Parents?
Whilst our children need a quality experience, we understand that to achieve that, our parents and carers need some quality time and experiences too. So, the activity on our Indigo Matters Facebook page, a page for parents to share ideas, thoughts and experiences has been expanded to provide top tips and support. Top tips on staying at home, self-care and sleep have been popular on the page but fun is big on our agenda too and our live weekly parents quiz on a Friday evening is proving a real hit, all be it highlighting the somewhat competitive nature in my own family dynamic!
Indigo Eats and Indigo TV sits as part of a wider collaboration with Castlemilk Together, a partnership of around 15 public, private and third sector organisations across Castlemilk, delivering shopping bags on a Monday and Friday which Indigo can refer families into and likewise these organisations can refer into Indigo Eats. The best news of all, is that we have secured funding from Awards for All, Scottish Government’s Wellbeing Fund and Third Sector Resilience Fund and the National Emergency Trust to continue and expand the work of Indigo Eats and Indigo TV. We will be able to continue that work for at least another 12-13 weeks and will be expanding it to include; activity packs to go alongside Indigo TV programmes, providing families with the resources to do the activities and perhaps extend on them; recognizing that the longer restrictions continue the more difficult finances can become, we will also be able to provide shopping vouchers and energy vouchers through Indigo Eats and Castlemilk Together. A huge thank you to these funders for enabling us to continue these vital services.
I hope that gives you a flavour of what life has been like for Indigo families since lockdown began. My next blog, soon to follow will share with you what we have been doing with regards to supporting and protecting our staff team!