Hard work and achievements in supporting communities highlighted, one year on from first lockdown coming into force
Renfrewshire Leisure’s chief executive has praised her team’s determination to deliver and help the region through the coronavirus pandemic.
Dr Victoria Hollows says the charity’s role in helping improve health and wellbeing has never been more important in light of challenges caused by Covid-19.
And she has highlighted her pride in the way in which staff have adapted to ensure they can be there for communities in different ways in the past year.
One year on from the start of Scotland’s first lockdown, Dr Hollows said: “I am incredibly proud of and thankful for our people who have, time and again, stepped up to support those around them in whatever way they can.
“Our charity and team’s determination to deliver – to make a difference – has made navigating the challenges of coronavirus over the past year more manageable.
“The temporary closure of our facilities has not meant the suspension of our services. Far from it. Thanks to innovation, commitment and pride among our team in serving the communities that they are part of, people have been constantly able to access our services in some form.
“From check-in calls by library staff to outdoor fitness classes, supporting neighbourhood hubs, Covid-19 testing, vaccinations and the rapid acceleration in our digital evolution, we have been active day in, day out.”
While venues and facilities have been closed for much – in some cases all – of the past 12 months, Renfrewshire Leisure has rapidly and significantly increased its online offering.
With content including fitness classes, reading events, local nostalgia and much more, that has seen in excess of 3.1 million visits to www.renfrewshireleisure.com, more than 77,000 e-books issued, 50,000-plus views on RenTV and 71,000 ondemand pageviews for online videos.
On top of that, the switch to digital that lockdown and social distancing rules have demanded has led to improved engagement with groups including care-experienced children and in those taking part in the Renfrewshire School of Sport Education.
The second Paisley Book Festival was also digital-only and was a sell-out success with 8,725 tickets sold.
The return of Renfrewshire Leisure services is being planned in-line with Scottish Government rules, with some outdoor sports activities already up and running again.
And Dr Hollows says she’s determined that the charity will play a major role in the region’s recovery from the pandemic.
She added: “Supporting our region’s wellbeing is at the heart of what we do, ensuring we can meet people’s needs as they evolve.
“We are fortunate to have had such loyal support from Renfrewshire Council, our members and other service users who we cannot wait to welcome back to our in-person services as they gradually return.”
For more details, go to www.renfrewshireleisure.com