Changes to how Djirra provides services are inevitable as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. During this tough time our approach is crystal clear. We will support our women, our communities and our staff with as much effort, flexibility and generosity as possible.
OUR NUMBER ONE PRIORITY
Aboriginal women and children as victims and survivors of family violence are our number one priority. Our current focus is to ensure that we stay connected with our communities - while at the same time ensuring that we are all safe.
There is no doubt that COVID-19 adds another layer of complexity to our already stretched services.
While we are doing everything to remain positive and responsive to the Aboriginal women and children that we are here to serve, we recognise that anxiety and stress is being felt by all of us.
Our service planning is evolving in response to changing external circumstances. What is consistent however, is that providing the necessary supports and tools to adapt to this stressful time, both within and beyond Djirra, is front and centre in our plans.
DJIRRA’S KEY MESSAGE TO OUR WOMEN AND COMMUNITIES
We want this message to be clear: Djirra’s doors may be shut (with most us are now working from home) but we are still delivering high quality services and support to our communities.
We are safely using mobile phones, and our website and social media, as our key connectors.
We are developing innovative ways to ensure that our communities can continue to access our services and support. This is particularly important as we know that many of our clients are now at a higher risk of violence, in the home and on the street (where there is an increased police and security presence).
The COVID-19 crisis means many members in our communities are being forced to stay in situations of violence. This is unacceptable.
We are working hard to ensure the government hears our calls for immediate emergency relief funding to support women and children to access safe accommodation and essential items. The key issues we are currently focussing on are highlighted in six core advocacy calls, available on our website.
SUPPORTING DJIRRA TEAMS TO BE THEIR BEST
We are taking all necessary steps to support our staff to successfully work from home or in other safe settings.
We have successfully transitioned to our virtual offices, with most face-to-face services temporarily suspended, while noting that some legal services are being provided face-to-face as individual courts put technology arrangements in place.
We are changing our service delivery models to enable programs to continue with minimal disruption.
Social distancing and infection control practices have been communicated to all at Djirra.
Our staff are very well supported to work from home with regular, in some cases daily, team meetings using Zoom and the continued availability of Employee Assistance Programs via telephone.
Detailed information about our current services is available on our Facebookor here on our website.
Finally, I want to assure our communities and stakeholders that Djirra’s commitment to fighting for our women’s rights, agitating for system changes that keep women and their children together and safe, and celebrating the ongoing strength and resilience of Aboriginal women remains as strong as ever.