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Our response to Corona Virus (Covid-19)

WALK’s main priorities during this time is to keep all the people we support and our staff team safe and well.

Crisis Management Team

We have set up a Crisis Management Team.  This team coordinates our response to how we can work most efficiently while still maintaining the best supports that we can to the people who use our service. The team meets three times a week to ensure our response is up to date and in line with Government, HSE and WHO recommendations.

To date, the crisis management team have coordinated:

  • Our administration teams to work remotely.
  • Rearrangement of rosters for frontline staff to ensure we can best plan for the weeks ahead.
  • A letter for families to let them know about how we will continue to provide supports.
  • A recruitment action plan to enable us to have sufficient numbers of staff available to use for working across our residential support services in the coming weeks and months.  As part of this plan we have joined with www.crisiscover.ie.
  • An online meeting with the residential team managers for every Monday, Wednesday and Friday to ensure we can manage our staffing situation adequately across our residential supports and to ensure contingency plans remain feasible and workable.
  • A review of our risk register in relation to this National Crisis.
  • Specific guidance and supports for the people we support and our staff team (see below)

Guidance for the people we support

We moved to non-centre based individualised day supports in accordance with Government advice on social distancing. Our day support staff have been innovative in the way in which they have continued to support people in education, training and personal development.

We have provided posters and social stories for our staff teams to support people understand what is happening at the moment.  A social story is “a short description(s) of a particular situation, event or activity, which include specific information about what to expect in that situation and why”.

The following are some examples of social stories we have available for staff:

  • What is Covid19.
  • What happens if I have to go for testing for Covid19.
  • Explaining that I have Covid19.
  • Explaining social isolating.
  • Not visiting others and having no visitors.
  • Information on practicing Hand hygiene routines and infection control generally.
  • Dealing with this new phase of more stringent measures for staying at home.

The following are some Posters we have available for staff:

  • Social distancing while shopping.
  • Social distancing while eating.
  •  “Keep our distance and keep each other safe”.

Guidance for our frontline staff

We have worked to cut through all the noise and provide factual and accurate mandatory reading and short training modules for our staff team.  We understand that our frontline staff are playing an exceptionally important job at this time and we do not want to bombard them with information overload. Our aim is that our front line staff are given the necessary information and tools to be and feel safe while they work to support individuals.

We have an online portal for the staff team where there is:

  • Updated and relevant mandatory short training modules and guidance documents around infection control issues such as hand hygiene and the appropriate use of Personal Protective Equipment.
  • Useful tools such as social stories.
  • ‘Frequently asked questions’ section that is updated as necessary.

In addition, we have

  • Ensured they have the ability for direct and immediate phone contact to their managers and any member of the Crisis Management Team if they want to discuss anything.
  • Ordered stocks of Personal Protective Equipment.

Guidance for families

You can find the link to our online resources for families here. This padlet was designed by our staff team to provide both factual and useful information for family members. If you did not receive your password please email info@walk.ie. 

We have sent a letter to all families outlining the work we are doing to protect their family member during this time. 

We hope you find all the information you need in this page. We will update this page with any other additional information that we feel will be of benefit to our wider community.  If there is any area you would like to seek clarity on or if there is anything missing, please contact us through info@walk.ie.  

We will continue to: 

  • Have online meetings with our management team every Monday, Wednesday and Friday 
  • Have daily meetings with our crisis management team.
  • Keep up to date with all guidance issuing from the HSE.
  • Ensure management check in on staff regularly to see how they are doing.
  • Update a portal for staff to check
  • Respond to queries of the people we support and family members about how we are managing during this National Crisis period.

Mental Wellbeing Campaign

Launched by Government of Ireland and the HSE on 14.04.2020

The Government and the HSE launched a Mental Wellbeing Campaign on 14.04.2020.

Here is a link to the page where you will find lots of advice and tips on how you can look after your mental wellbeing and cope with your new daily routine.

There are all the topics that are covered.

 - Looking after your mental health

 - Coping at home

 - Staying Active

 - Healthy Eating

 - Helping in the Community

 - Cocooning 

Some people might find this time more worrying than others and may need some extra support on the phone or online.

Official External Information

We suggest the following external information may be useful for people:

From the HSE:

This HSE page has information on the following:

  • Symptoms and causes
  • Testing
  • Restricted movements and self-isolation
  • How to protect yourself and others
  • At risk groups and Cocooning
  • Treatment
  • Hospital service disruptions
  • Minding your mental health during Covid-19
  • Useful posters and resources.         

The HSE have also published this Public Information Booklet.


From the Department of Health in Ireland.

This video on How Covid-19 spreads

This video about How to protect yourself from Covid-19

This video On Social Distancing

All other Department of Health short videos are available here.


From the Health Protection Surveillance Centre

This HPSC page has information on 

  • Cases in Ireland
  • Advice for vulnerable groups
  • Advice and guidance for healthcare workers
  • Guidance for non-clinical settings
  • Advice for general public (posters and video resources)


From the Citizen's Information Centre

This Citizen's Information page has information on 

  • Health information
  • Employment and income support
  • Registering a birth or death
  • Mortgages and loans
  • Tenants and rent
  • Domestic Violence
  • Utilities
  • Education
  • Immigration
  • Returning to Ireland
  • Travel
  • Driving and public transport
  • Older people. 

World Health Organisation Handwashing technique

"Proper hand hygiene is the most important thing you can do to prevent the spread of germs and to protect yourself and others from illnesses. When not done carefully, germs on the fingertips, palms and thumbs, and between fingers, are often missed. This video demonstrates the World Health Organization (WHO) technique for hand-washing. Watch the video to be sure you are washing your hands thoroughly" (Johns Hopkins Medicine).
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WALK Head Office, 1 Longmile Road, Walkinstown, Dublin 12

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Contact Us

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Phone: +353 (0)1 465 03 88
Email: info@walk.ie

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WALK is a registered Charity. Charity number is CHY 10777. Companies Registration Number 322400. Registered Charity Number (CRA Number) 20028008
Accredited by: Trusted Charity
WALK is the trading name for Walkinstown Association for People with an Intellectual Disability Limited. All rights reserved. © WALK 2015
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