We asked Labour Party members to tell us just that. Here are some responses: please send us yours!
Claire Page, Marlborough
As a teacher, I’ve been teaching remotely from home. I’m interested in mental health and I’m a counsellor as well as a teacher. Two of the things I’ve found most rewarding during lockdown are courses I’ve taught online. The first is teaching counselling skills to adults, the second teaching a course of Cognitive Behavioural Therapy to adolescents.
I’ve also got two twenty-somethings back at home for lockdown and I’m concerned how the fallout from the pandemic is going to affect their generation in terms of mental health as well as education and employment prospects.
Trevor Cherrett, Devizes
I am a semi-retired planner who has worked across national and local government, academia and the independent and voluntary sector. I am Chair of the Wiltshire Community Land Trust, which offers support to communities wanting to build affordable homes for local people, in partnership with Community First and Wiltshire Council. I am also a member of the national Town and Country Planning association`s Policy Forum and the Rural Coalition.
Thanks to Zoom I have been able to continue with some of this work in the lockdown, as well as having the good fortune of living in a comfortable home with a garden and a pond, plus a long country lane to walk down and stay sane.
I have long been interested – perhaps obsessed – with the need for radical electoral and policy reforms in the UK, and have recently published a paper on this. I look forward to influencing change and sharing my ideas at a future Devizes Labour Party discussion.
Joe Brindle, Devizes
As well as supporting the start-up of the Covid-19 emergency volunteer group in Devizes, I've been pushing for a Green Recovery for Education in my new role as a Campaign Coordinator at Teach the Future.
We're asking that the Chancellor invests retrofitting all education buildings to net-zero as part of fiscal stimulus, doing this will create tens of thousands of green jobs, reduce the UK's emissions, ensure investment is spread across the country and help inspire students to live more sustainably. I've written an open letter signed by 1,105 students to the Chancellor on this matter.
Devizes Labour CLP believe that the “new normal” must fully embrace the climate challenge.
Ross Maltby-Tykot, Ludgershall
Since lockdown has started, I've been fortunate enough have the means to work from home. This is something I do not take lightly as I know this is not the case for everyone. When I am not at work, I have recently started reading more - usually political books from all parts of the political spectrum. I believe this is vital in forming your own opinions and understanding why people believe what they do.
The main reason I identify with the Labour Party is the simple fact I believe in looking out for each other. I believe society can only move as quickly as its slowest member so we need to work together as a community in order to improve the quality of life for everyone and I look to strive forward in every way I can to do just that starting with my local community.
Ross has agreed to step up onto the Labour Party Exec Committee as our new Youth Officer, and plans for invigorating a new Young Labour group in Devizes CLP are underway.
Rachael Ross, near Pewsey
As lockdown started, I continued working from home switching my face to face leadership coaching work to online meetings – which definitely has its’ limitations. Between Labour Party local and regional work, I have been volunteering with my local Covid-19 group in Pewsey. Led by Phil Brady, Pewsey launched an amazing volunteer response including delivering weekly food boxes to our most vulnerable local residents as well as food shopping, dog walking, buddy phone support and signposting and advice. As we transition towards a “new normal” we plan to transform into a new charity with plans to work on community projects with young people in the Pewsey area.
Rachael Ross Picture credit Siobhan Boyle
Phil Brady, Pewsey Picture credit Siobhan Boyle
Noël Woolrych, Devizes
I've worked from home (well office/workshop in the garden) for years so apart from investing heavily in technology to enable remote support, my work load hasn't really changed a lot. On the cusp of lockdown our 3 yearold granddaughter was rushed into hospital with an undiagnosed virus which turned out to be sepsis. In the mean time we had to rescue her brother after a frantic midnight call from our son who drives for HM Prison Service. Enabling people to work remotely is something that I specialise in, but restoring a dental practice to enable them to continue work after being severly hacked - no data was compromised but significant damage was done - was a considerable challenge. Running the town CCTV presented a change in direction as the pattern of crime changed. However, because we invested in better technology just before lockdown, we were able to respond to Police requests for data much more quickly than in the past.
My role throughout the pandemic has been to support and enable people and businesses to continue to do their jobs. Whilst my normal standpoint is to lead from the front, I chose to provide support and assistance to enable more people to do what they do best, thus helping a wider community. For example not everyone knows how to setup and run video conferencing such as Zoom. Providing support has enabled huge numbers of organisation, businesses, interest groups and families to keep in touch with eachother.