Lessons Learned from Doing FNS Work During a Pandemic - MtS DEMS Prevention CoP Call - May 2020
We have heard from many MtS DEMS sites that even though it has proven challenging at times to do FNS work throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, they have also seen: that some youth and families have been more willing to engage in FNS work due to having to isolate together; that some youth have found it easier to be vulnerable on Zoom calls; that some family have helped support youth to progress towards mental health, employment, or education goals. There are many different ways that sites have adapted their practice to continue engaging youth, families, and natural supports throughout this pandemic that can be sustained long-term. Below are some key learnings about how we can build on adaptations to FNS work during the pandemic as we move forward, based on the Making the Shift HF4Y Community of Practice call that happened on May 26, 2020.
- Video conferencing can be used as a tool moving forward, especially for youth, families, and natural supports in rural areas. For some youth, families, and natural supports, it can be more challenging to have face to face meetings if there is a lot of travel involved in making these happen, but through video conferencing programs can do some of that trust-building online.
- We can build on cross-systems and cross-organizational collaboration happening now. In response to the pandemic, different systems (Child Protection, Justice, hospitals, schools, etc) are currently collaborating with youth serving organizations to support youth and their families/natural supports.
- Dropping off groceries and supporting youth and families/natural supports to meet their basic needs creates opportunities for trust building and further engagement in FNS work.