I hope you are keeping safe and well in these strange and challenging times.
This is my weekly newsletter, keeping you up to date with what I’ve been up to both in the constituency and in parliament, representing Derby North.
This week, BTEC results have been received by students and I want to offer them my warmest congratulations. I imagine the past two weeks have been an anxious wait for you, but I hope all students are able to go into the further study or jobs that they were aiming for.
In a similar vein, Schools will be going back full-time within the next couple of weeks and I want to offer my assurance to parents and students that they will be safe places for your children to go. We are expecting everyone to go back and start the year fresh, albeit in slightly different circumstances to this time last year, and raring to go. Please make sure to be in communication with your children’s school to find out if they are staggering the start and finish of the school day or any other changes that may be occurring. It may also be helpful to ensure your child carries their own hand sanitiser in their bags too. I wish everyone starting school again – or for the first time! – the very best of luck this year.
This week I was out and about in Derby North again getting to meet more people who are doing wonderful things in our community. At the Lonny Wilsoncroft Community Centre – New Zealand Community Association – Mandy and her colleagues were telling me all about the work they have been doing by creating food parcels and we were discussing how to help people beyond giving them food. For projects like this to be sustainable, we must think about the mid to long-term, beyond giving food packages out, and I was pleased to hear some of their ideas. Vicky also told me about a phone service she started with volunteers calling people who are lonely or shielding and so can’t get out. With a simple Facebook message, she was able to round up 40 volunteers who now regularly contact 50 people in the community. It is wonderful to see how everyone has pulled together in these difficult times and are making Derby North a better place for everyone,
I also went back to visited Dan and his students at Engineered Learning this week to see a bike they have been working on. It’s wonderful to see young people learning such important skills and I was so impressed with the bike they had repaired. The best part was that the bike was originally faulty, and so may have ended up going to landfill, all while learning new skills – that seems like a win-win to me!
Finally, I visited Deco Hair Salon where Donna and I were chatting about her intensions to provide free haircuts for people who are preparing for job interviews. We have all heard about the tough economic situation Covid-19 has caused and so anything we can do to help people get these interviews and hopefully find employment, is a huge benefit to us all.
Parliamentary recess comes to an end today so we will be back in full swing after the bank holiday. I am looking forward to starting back and being in the House again with everyone.
Best wishes and stay safe,