A Reflection on 2020 for Maple
If we were sitting here one year ago today, it would be safe to say no-one would have predicted the unprecedented challenges that the year 2020 has thrown our way. From horrific bushfires and catastrophic floods that strained this country, to a global health pandemic, desolating political unrest overseas, and unforeseen destruction & sorrow in Lebanon, it really has been “365 days for the ages”.
As always is the case however, silver linings often emerge when we as humanity are faced with adversity. From the highest levels of international governance and humanitarianism, to our own selves; attributes of resilience, selflessness, charity, strength, and sense of community have shone like never before. It is important to remember these positives, and how we as individuals have grown in the face of adversity, when we reflect back on 2020 in the years to come.
On a note closer to home, this year has also been one of promising change for the Disability Sector, with the ‘Royal Commission into Violence, Abuse, Neglect, and Exploitation of People with Disability’, completing its first full year of sitting. Whilst some of the initial submissions of evidence have been confronting to say the least; we, along with all other’s involved within this industry, have hope that the recommendations made at the conclusion of the Royal Commission in April 2022 will lead to improved laws, policies, structures, and practices to ensure a more inclusive and just society.
The impacts of COVID-19 have also hit the Disability Sector hard over the past 9 months. Strong restrictions and preventative protocols made it not only difficult for Services Providers such as Maple to continue ‘operations as normal’ but more importantly, for those with a disability to continue accessing the community and going about their daily and essential routines. This has unfortunately led to increased feelings of isolation, anxiety, and depression within the vulnerable community as found by the Royal Commission’s investigation.
Being integral parts of the Maple community; our stakeholders, workforce, and participants all had to change and adapt quickly to ensure continued provision of essential services. It is with this, that we would like to sincerely thank each and every one of our stakeholders for your dedication, commitment, and professionalism over such a trying and unprecedented period. The challenges, unexpected changes and introduction of increased protocols and procedures has seen us all meddle in new territory. (It is reported that Face Masks will be voted Vogue’s must have fashion item of 2020 🙂 ). We are so proud of how quickly and tolerably our community adapted without hesitation to meet the changing requirements placed on the Disability Support Services Industry. We say confidently, that we would not be where we are today without your hard work, dedication, and passion, and for that we again say a sincere thank you.
We very much look forward to embarking on a bigger, better, and more exciting 2021 with the Maple Community and Family.
With sincere thanks,
Abdul Razak and Samira Abdulrazak