Following last week's newsletter where we heard from recently paired up buddies Rachelle and Dani, we caught up with our user-led team of Myra, Fraser, Stavros, Jack, Lachy and Audrey - also known as the Soul Fly Band - to find out how they're catching up with their respective buddies during the Covid lockdown.
While Rachelle and Dani were yet to meet in person, Soul Fly Band members have been matched with their respective buddies for a long time, ranging from five years to fourteen months.
We caught up over the phone to talk about how they’ve been engaging and to see if they have made any plans post Covid.
How have you and your buddy been catching up?
Myra: "We have been catching up over text, which has been good. We are going to talk soon on FaceTime."
Fraser: "Every few days to a week we have a Facebook video chat. We’ll chat about our families and what we’ve been up to. Sometimes we’ll reminisce on good times, for example the Sydney Kings final - our last gig before isolation, and the Coogee and Bondi walk and the cooking classes we’ve done together."
Stavros: "We’ve spoken on the phone and on Facebook Messenger."
Jack: "We’ve been FaceTiming and we’ve been for a walk together. I went around his place in Lane Cove - it was good to catch up and we might do it again this weekend."
Lachy: "We’ve been catching up on FaceTime."
Audrey: "We made contact and we’ve organised to catch up next Sunday morning - we’re going for a walk and a coffee. We haven’t seen each since Covid started."
What have you been doing together during your catch ups?
Myra: "Just chatting and talking about stuff and catching up."
Fraser: "We had a ‘watch party’ where we put our Netflixes on two different screens and watched the Michael Jordan documentary, The Last Dance, together. We had both screens going and chatted at the end."
Stavros: "We’ve been chatting about how we’ve been going. We’ve been swapping music - I’ve sent her a few clips of me singing and some clips from albums that are coming out. I’ve also been doing some personal training and keeping active with another friend of mine. For three days a week we’ve been going to the park to work out."
Jack: "We’ve been talking about how we’ve been keeping busy and what we’ve been watching on TV."
Lachy: "Just catching up really, seeing what we’ve been up to. We’re thinking of going to Supa Nova in August."
Audrey: "We’ve caught up over FaceTime. We’ve been talking about our families and things we’ve been up to. I also catch up with my drama group every Thursday on Zoom and then on Sunday I have another Zoom chat with Bus Stop Films."
How else have you engaged with the Gig Buddies Sydney community?
Myra: "I’ve entered the pub quiz and I am interested in the bingo - I played that with my grandma a long time ago in a community hall."
Fraser: "I’ve just started engaging, talking to the Gig Buddies Sydney staff over Zoom. I have also attended a few group chats, and I took part in bingo on Tuesday. I came second so was happy with that! I also did the pet-a-rama gig and showed people my brother and my fish. I’m also going to take part in the Australia quiz."
Stavros: "Through Facebook and I’ve also entered a few online quizzes. I’m going to enter the Australia quiz and last week my mum and I joined the Gig Buddies Q&A session. It was pretty good - it was good to hear what the team have been doing."
Jack: "I’ve been doing the online quizzes and the Facebook group calls."
Lachy: "I’ve been doing the quizzes and bingo - and I’m really enjoying the Facebook meetings as well as I’ve met a few new people from these conversations. I also came to the Q&A session."
Audrey: "I have been in contact with Bec, we caught up two or three times. We’ve been talking over the phone and through text messages."
What plans do you and your buddy have post-Covid?
Myra: "We haven’t got anything planned yet - I need to talk to her about this as it’s been a while!"
Fraser: "We’ve talked about a few things, like going to the beach or going to a basketball match together. When we come through this we’ll do a big special gig together."
Stavros: "Not yet. I was going to go to Faith No More but that’s been cancelled, as has Iron Maiden. We’ll look to make some plans soon but we don’t know when normal will return. I don't want to make plans and for them not to happen."
Jack: "Probably catch up and get a bite to eat."
Lachy: "I think we’re going to see Dave Hughes who’s rescheduled for October at Chatswood Concourse."
Audrey: "We haven't really discussed that, but we might talk about it on Sunday when we meet up."
Happy National Volunteer Week! We’ve reached out to many of our matched up buddies, some of whom have taken to the camera and told us more about their pairing and their involvement with the project.
Next week we are going to show five videos, one for each day of the week. We’ll provide more information in seven days time.
Sing your heart out, play some Catchphrase
As for this week, buddies have the opportunity to join us for our first ever Gig Buddies Sydney karaoke session, while we’ll also be hosting a ‘famous faces’ online quiz.
To get involved in any of our socials, click on the blue event links below to register.
- Midday: Gig Buddies Sydney famous faces quiz
- 7:30pm: Gig Buddies Sydney karaoke
- Midday: Gig Buddies Sydney karaoke
The above ticket links will also include information about what technology you need to join in. All Gig Buddies Sydney online activities take place via Zoom, while we’ve also written an easy read guide for Kahoot! - the app used for our famous faces quiz. Click here to read.
To take part in our famous faces quiz, buddies will need to access two devices - one to run Zoom and the other to enable the Kahoot! app. For example, buddies could access Zoom via a desktop computer/laptop and load up the Kahoot! app on a smartphone or tablet.
If you have any questions about any of our up and coming online socials or would like more information, send us an email: firstname.lastname@example.org, get in touch on Facebook Messenger or contact us via text or on the phone on either 0422 061 990 or 0412 145 819.
Following state and federal government guidance, last Friday (15/5) brought about a relaxation of lockdown restrictions for Sydneysiders. To find out what people can and cannot do, click here.
From a Gig Buddies Sydney perspective, we continue to offer participants the opportunity to engage with staff via our Facebook chats and the online socials.
We’re here to remind participants that if you’re experiencing increased levels of social isolation to please get in touch. Buddies can text or call us on either 0422 061 990 or 0412 145 819. We’re here to chat.
Gig Buddies Sydney Community Engagement Coordinator
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Donations over $2 are tax deductible and all are gratefully received.
The Gig Buddies Sydney project is an initiative of ACL Disability Services.