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(@jeanne-mayell)
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03/15/2020 11:38 pm  

Opening this topic for our Aussie and NZ community members. 


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(@michele-b)
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03/15/2020 11:45 pm  

Right on, Jeanne!

Excellent idea considering how impacted this beautiful country has been impacted by floods, wildfires and now COVID-19. 

Just following the love and care and generosity being extended to Tom Hanks and his wife Rita just further endeared the incredible spirit of this land and its people.

Great Big Welcome to our Aussie and New Zealanders!. Please post stories and experiences so we can get to know you all better.

 

 


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(@jeanne-mayell)
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03/15/2020 11:52 pm  

I just sent another email off to Bernie's husband but I don't think he's checking email. 


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(@michele-b)
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03/16/2020 12:17 am  

@jeanne-mayell

Probably not but gosh that was sure nice of you Jeanne 💌

We love you Bernie please heal well and make it through this challenge. Big caring hugs to both of you from a group of caring long distance friends  💕

 


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(@hererightnow)
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03/16/2020 12:29 am  

Thank you for opening a topic as I am in New Zealand.  Tough measures were enacted at the weekend.  Anyone flying in must self quarantine for 2 weeks.  They can force you if necessary.  Crowds of over 500 are banned.  Cruises banned till at least June.  They are thinking of closing schools.  

 

This is completely decimating our tourist industry which we rely on, plus our national airline.  We are such a small country, only 5 million people. My husband works at the local airport so we are very worried.  Especially as I don't work due to long term ill health.  I understand why it's happening but its frightening. 

 

Even more worring, I am originally from the UK and my parents live there.  The government efforts seem a complete shambles and I am very concerned.


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(@hererightnow)
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03/16/2020 12:30 am  

We have had 8 cases so far.


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(@goldstone)
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03/16/2020 8:01 am  

Back in my home state, 71 cases and no deaths so far in Victoria, but the situation is quite tense at best at the moment. Just this morning, Premier Andrew Daniel declared a state of emergency, which cause public places such as libraries, galleries, etc to be shut down. They also banned gatherings of 500 people as well.

Surprisingly, they tried to encourage schools and universities to keep open in the midst of this troubling surroundings, where some medical experts on a federal level said that closing them could make the situation worse.They have talked about how if kids have stayed home, they would ended up hanging out in publics spaces, causing health workers to stay home to tend to their kids or having older family members minding them would exposed them to the dangers, etc. I'm a little mixed about that, but I can see where they are coming from, but it would be nice if they have a concrete plans for teachers and staff, as I suspect they around the older age.

There are some private schools were begining to shut down and there's been plans of ending Term 1 sooner and extending the easter holidays for an extra week.

Meanwhile, four Victorian universities are making their moves to close up classes and move to online tutorials. I'm from one of the universities that were affected by this panademic, but I wasn't surprised by their actions, since they found one of the students was being tested positive two weeks ago.

In the Victorian legal sector, Chief Justice Anne Ferguson made a statement in regards to the coronavirus:

The Victorian Courts Council considers the health and wellbeing of staff and court users as its highest priority. As the situation around coronavirus disease (COVID-19) rapidly evolves, Victoria’s courts and the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal (VCAT) are looking at ways we can adapt how we work to reduce its spread. 

A number of measures have already been implemented, including:

  • increased cleaning,
  • installation of hand sanitiser dispensers in common areas, 
  • cancelling non-essential meetings,
  • suspending new civil and criminal jury trials,
  • suspending Admissions Ceremonies for new lawyers,
  • suspending the VCE Education Program,
  • suspending work experience arrangements, and 
  • suspending all Judicial College of Victoria courses.

The courts and VCAT are investigating a range of options to manage daily operations in the event of reduced services, staffing and resources. This includes:

  • staggering court times to prevent morning crowds at entrance points,
  • increasing the capacity for video conferencing and hearings,
  • evaluating and prioritising cases,
  • remote working options for staff, where possible, and
  • managing some matters without in-court appearances.

The Courts and VCAT are in regular communication and are closely following State and Commonwealth government advice. 

We will continue to update the legal sector, parties involved and the community where changes occur and thank all court users and staff for their patience and understanding at this unprecedented time.

While the courts seemed to be open, it's a matter of time their doors will eventually be shut as well, so right now I'm rushing to putting together a gift for a certain judge as a small token of appreciation. I felt apprihensive in doing something like that, since I'm fully aware that judges tend to be cagely about recieving gifts due to the fear of bribery and ruining their professionalism, but the coronavirus made me thought about mortality. What is there today, might be gone tomorrow, so I had no choice in the matter to act first. Especially when this said judge might be their 50's to early 60's, which is the age bracket where the mortality rate has raisen to dangerous levels.

On a personal front, my comic studio was discussing about canceling more events and closing our doors from the public, where only members can enter the premise. As usual, if anyone gets sick, we also refrain ourselves from coming in. It might sound crazy to keep the studio running at this time, but this is more of a commune space where we have less than 10 members on our list, where we try to support each other, especially through times like this.

I really hope we can weather this storm. It's already March and we're still got a long way to go before 2020 ends.

 


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(@michele-b)
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03/23/2020 1:29 pm  

For anyone living in New Zealand or Australia could you chime in and let us know how you are all doing in your countries?

I have a close friend whose daughter and family  live in Melbourne and she says they don't seem to be concerned where they are.

I doubt this is the case but perhaps they are having personal denial or trying to protect their American mother/mother-in-law and family?

How are things really going as far as dealing with the pandemic?

I came across this link today from an Austrslizm compilation  with some excellent advice for anyone but it brought all of you into my heart and my thoughts so:

Here are some tips for looking after yourself and the people you love that we’ve pulled together from great info shared

by BeyondBlue, headspace, ReachOut, and the Australian Psychological Society: 

COVID-19: LOOKING AFTER YOURSELF & OTHERS

By Reach

Stress related to the novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) can leave us feeling anxious and overwhelmed; the constant stream of information, concern about our health, and uncertainty as the situation unfolds can contribute to how we respond to and care for ourselves and others.

Further, as things like social isolation or distancing are recommended to help contain the spread of COVID-19, our day-to-day lives are disrupted and our social contact is reduced. 

As well as these direct impacts, many young people have also been affected by COVID-19 indirectly through the news and social media, or knowing someone who has been affected. Research also shows the living conditions associated with responding to pandemic disasters can be experienced as frightening and traumatic, which may have ongoing impacts on wellbeing.  

Common reactions to COVID-19 and social isolation/distancing :

Feeling stressed 

Anxiety and worry 

Sadness 

Feeling helpless 

Frustration or irritability 

Difficulty concentrating or sleeping 

Fear of going to public places 

Reactions indicting need for more support:

Persistent and intense anxiety, worry, insomnia, or irritability. 

Persistently checking your body (e.g., taking your temperature many times each day) or persistently seeking reassurance about your health from doctors, friends, family, or the Internet. 

Performing excessive or unnecessary hygiene precautions, such as wearing a facemask at home or repeatedly washing your hands when there is no need to do so. 

Abusing alcohol or drugs, or overeating, as a way of coping with stress. 

Feedback from friends or family indicating that you seem unusually worried or stressed out. 

May add to or result in:

Fear and anxiety about a disease can lead to social stigma toward people, places, or things. 

Stigma and discrimination can occur when people associate a disease, such as COVID-19, with a population or nationality, even though not everyone in that population or from that region is specifically at risk for the disease.

Stigma can also occur after a person has been released from COVID-19 quarantine even though they are not considered a risk for spreading the virus to others, or individuals who have contracted COVID-19 and are receiving treatment.  

It is common in times of crisis to look for someone or something to blame. While this is often an attempt to create a sense of safety or reassurance, blame and anger erode others’ sense of safety and feelings of wellbeing.  

 

Looking after yourself and others:

Research indicates that being connected to others is important for our mental and physical wellbeing, with proven links to lower rates of anxiety and depression, higher self-esteem, and greater empathy.

While our usual means of connection have been impacted, there are many things we can continue to remain connected, and look after ourselves and each other. 

 


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(@rohenna)
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03/24/2020 6:38 am  

Hi all, 

Long-time lurker, first-time poster. I live in Victoria, Australia, and am so relieved that the schools here have finally been shut for three weeks - my son and I are bunkered down at home happily introverting. 

I am less of a political commentator and more of an empath, feeling my way through things. The fear here is huge, as it is everywhere across the world. I take some heart in the predictions I have read here and my own fledgling, random, psychic...blips (I'm only just learning to really tune into my intuition). 

For example, a week or two before things got crazy here I suddenly had the strongest urge to go and stock up on extra groceries. My son is celiac so we often have delays on gluten-free food supply at the best of times. I felt like a crazy person, and was really embarrassed at my purchase of two cans of soup, two loaves of bread, etc...until a week later. Watching our supermarkets (for starters) turn upside down from the fear was indescribable. The fear and anger was palpable. I am still marvelling at that urge, and how grateful I have been ever since that I followed it. 

I feel like we are here to siphon off some of this fear and anger and allow others to find space to let go of their resistance.  I know it's going to be a huge few years, but I know it's for a really positive reason long term, and it's bigger than all of us.

These forums and your predictions help remind me of this - particularly the person who linked to that beautiful Letter from COVID-19 to Humanity the other day. Today, for the first time in years, bearing in mind we are being asked as a planet/race to slow down, I spread a picnic blanket on the grass (Aussie spiders are NOT to be messed with) and lay in the sun watching the clouds in perfect peace. 

A HUGE thank you to @JeanneMayall and all of you for this forum. 


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(@michele-b)
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03/24/2020 10:24 am  

Reposting and sharing:

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Posts: 14
 
 
03/24/2020 7:00 am   

Well, it's official that Australia is on the stage one lockdown.

https://www.abc.net.au/news/2020-03-22/coronavirus-lockdown-what-it-means/12079242

Also now all Australians are banned from traveling outside of the country in the PM's recent announcement.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison has announced further restrictions on businesses, public gatherings and overseas travel in a bid to slow the spread of coronavirus following his meeting with the national cabinet tonight.

From midnight tomorrow night these activities and businesses will no longer be allowed to continue:

  • Amusement parks and arcades
  • Indoor and outdoor play centres
  • Community and recreation centres, health clubs, fitness centres, yoga, barre, spin facilities, saunas, wellness centres
  • Swimming pools
  • Galleries, museums, national institutions, historic sites, libraries, community centres
  • Auction houses
  • Real estate auctions and open house inspections
  • In-store beauty therapy, tanning, waxing, nail salons and tattoo parlours, spa and massage parlours (excluding health-related services, like physiotherapy)
  • Food courts within shopping centres will only be able to sell takeaway. Shopping centres themselves will remain open

Mr Morrison also addressed specifics around a number of other activities:

  • Hairdressers and barber shops can continue, but they must limit the time a customer is in the premise to no more than 30 minutes
  • Personal training and boot camps are limited to a maximum of 10 people
  • Weddings can continue, but only with the couple, the celebrant, and witnesses — totalling a maximum of five people
  • Funerals are limited to a maximum of 10 people
  • Outdoor and indoor food markets will be addressed by individual states and territories

The Prime Minister also announced Australians would be banned from travelling overseas, with some exceptions made for aid workers and for compassionate, employment and other essential travel. 

He also said the advice on schools had not changed and it was safe to send children to school.

On a broader note, Mr Morrison said people should not go out and "participate more broadly in the community, unless you're shopping for basics or there are medical needs or you're providing care and support to an individual at another place."

Considering how more schools are getting infected, I'm starting to think that keeping schools broadly open is a bad idea. The Scotch College is one of the latest schools in Victoria to be hit by the virus. The news broke out on the very last day of Term 1, where Premier of Victoria is has just decided to begin the easter break one week earlier than the Federal Government recommends.

Victoria's school are still kept open after the official holidays had began, which is for kids who in dire need of the school's services, so that's understandable and alright.


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(@jeanne-mayell)
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03/25/2020 12:52 am  

@rohenna  Dear sweet Rohenna, Thank you for sharing your story with us.  Everything you wrote resonates with me.  This community welcomes you with open arms. 

 


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(@michele-b)
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03/25/2020 1:59 am  
Posted by: @rohenna

Hi all, 

Long-time lurker, first-time poster. I live in Victoria, Australia, and am so relieved that the schools here have finally been shut for three weeks - my son and I are bunkered down at home happily introverting. 

I am less of a political commentator and more of an empath, feeling my way through things. The fear here is huge, as it is everywhere across the world. I take some heart in the predictions I have read here and my own fledgling, random, psychic...blips (I'm only just learning to really tune into my intuition). 

For example, a week or two before things got crazy here I suddenly had the strongest urge to go and stock up on extra groceries. My son is celiac so we often have delays on gluten-free food supply at the best of times. I felt like a crazy person, and was really embarrassed at my purchase of two cans of soup, two loaves of bread, etc...until a week later. Watching our supermarkets (for starters) turn upside down from the fear was indescribable. The fear and anger was palpable. I am still marvelling at that urge, and how grateful I have been ever since that I followed it. 

I feel like we are here to siphon off some of this fear and anger and allow others to find space to let go of their resistance.  I know it's going to be a huge few years, but I know it's for a really positive reason long term, and it's bigger than all of us.

These forums and your predictions help remind me of this - particularly the person who linked to that beautiful Letter from COVID-19 to Humanity the other day. Today, for the first time in years, bearing in mind we are being asked as a planet/race to slow down, I spread a picnic blanket on the grass (Aussie spiders are NOT to be messed with) and lay in the sun watching the clouds in perfect peace. 

A HUGE thank you to @JeanneMayall and all of you for this forum. 

 

Oh, Rohenna! You are indeed an empath and an intuitive. You are here just as we all are  to process and get so much stuff out and to learn and to grow and to get stronger and smarter and all kinds of really good and oh so necessary things together.

And as Jeanne said it all resonates with her and with me that you are now here just when it was just right for you with all of us 

And boy are we glad you  are!  💜


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(@rohenna)
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03/25/2020 9:24 am  

You both made me cry (in a good way).

💜

Thank you so much for the warm welcome.


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(@goldstone)
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03/25/2020 9:50 pm  

Well, it's official. Two people in the state of Victoria has died, both in their 70's.

https://www.abc.net.au/news/2020-03-26/victoria-records-first-coronavirus-deaths/12091594

While I'm writing this, Victoria is in Stage 2 lockdown, where not only the Premier took a notch level higher than the Federal Government has announced, but Daniel Andrews implied that Stage 3 is on the tables.

https://www.abc.net.au/news/2020-03-25/victoria-coronavirus-covid19-stage-2-shutdown-measures/12086898

On the domestic front, it's quiet at the moment. My parents are out to see the GP for vaccination for the winter season, they were going to ask if I'm eligiable for one as well, where I told them that they can always tell the GP that I have asthma.

Speaking of which, I have an appointment with my councellour today. On the phone or Zoom of course, due to the said dangers out there.

I'm currently making some lemon honey tea with a spoonful of preserved omija. I don't influse ginger in the day time at the moment due to the fears of certain side effects that might be detrimential for the immune defence system, instead I'll have it when I'm close to bedtime.

Hopefully I could find my accademic transcript somewhere in that pile of papers and such today. That would be give some extra peace of mind, as the application for that Graduate program is closing in on the due date.

I have a much busier week than I've antisipated despite bunkering down in my house. I hope next week is much quieter. I do certainly need that.


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(@michele-b)
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03/27/2020 7:58 pm  

@goldstone

Thank you much for giving us this update! We all wonder how you are and how you are doing. That all sounds good and feels promising for you. After you go through your "paperwork" of course 😊

For those of us with family or friends in Australia, we love these personal updates.

I was just thinking about you and did a news link check and found these:

💖💜💖

Coronavirus Australia live news:

NSW and Victoria consider stage 3 restrictions with more than 3,000 national cases – latest updates | Australia news | The Guardian

https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/live/2020/mar/28/coronavirus-australia-live-nsw-qld-victoria-lockdown-restrictions-quarantine-ventilators-latest-updates

https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/live/2020/mar/28/coronavirus-australia-live-nsw-qld-victoria-lockdown-restrictions-quarantine-ventilators-latest-updates


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(@goldstone)
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03/28/2020 11:39 am  

@michele-b

Thanks, I'll take any sorts kindness that has been given, especially the last couple of days were testing to say the least. I couldn't able to apply for that Graduate Program for next year due my academic transcripts cannot be process before the due date, no thanks to the coronavirus. I realised I have no hard copies. I was pretty devisated, to the point it trigger some traumatic memories of my school years, causing me to be driven over the edge when it comes to headspace. I've unfriended every single one of the my former classmates on Facebook because I just couldn't handle their presence anymore, especially when they all high achievers without any mental impairments like autism, where I'm lagging to the point it felt like I'm a walking punchline.

Now I'm trying to pick up the pieces, but it's hard when the future prospects are bleak so far. I'm very uncertain what the future will bring, let alone being able to have my lifetime dream come true where I become a barrister, working for the local artist community who needs my service and such.

Sorry for acting moody recently, I hope I have some better news next time.


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(@michele-b)
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03/28/2020 3:27 pm  

@goldstone

Hang in there friend. These are extra challenging times where most of us are stuck and can't do or be all the things we've always been and love the most--much less some of the greater things we dream of.

Please take that despair give it us a hug for all that it teaches you then kiss it goodbye for an hour or a half a day and let it go and find just one single thing that made you you happy within that hour or half a day or a day.  A song you heard, a book you read, a movie you watched. Anything. Remember what happy feels like and let yourself be it.

Give the gifts you need from others to yourself. Accept where you are right now and say its o.k. accept how you are and say its ok. Accept one minute you can be happy and the next minute sad and the next minute want to give up and throw the book out the window. There are all ok because they are just feelings. They are OF you but NOT you!

We care for you and truly like you. I love seeing a new post from you because i know it will give me something new to think about and to feel. Please come here and read and write and share about anything, any time!

 


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(@goldstone)
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03/29/2020 7:42 am  

Some updates in regards to the situation back in Australia.

- There's now a two people limit in gatherings. Both indoors and outdoors. Family members are excempt from the rule apparantly. Previously it's only ten people limit.

https://www.abc.net.au/news/2020-03-29/public-gatherings-limited-to-two-people-coronavirus-covid-19/12101162

Personally, I'm not surprised to see this coming, considering people are flouting the social distencing and guidelines with complete disregard. Personally I saw a bunch of youths crowding around at the side of the bike trail with tons of alcohol on Saturday, as I'm making my way back from the studio via by bike. (Before you ask, I was trying to get more stuff from the studio before future lockdowns make it impossible. The bike ride between my house and my studio is long and very testing when it comes to endurance, so it's not a leisurely ride.)

Don't get me started about St. Kilda beach. Despite the local council close the area, people are still flocking out for leisure and such.

https://www.abc.net.au/news/2020-03-29/fourth-person-dies-from-coronavirus-in-victoria/12100490

We got 4 people dead in Victoria so far.

@michele-b

Thanks. It means a lot to me. I'll try what I can to fix it up, not sure how, but I will try.


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(@goldstone)
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03/30/2020 7:51 am  

An article about a ravaged bushfire port town that has barely missed the bullet as a cruise ship was very close to disembark on their doorstep.

https://www.abc.net.au/news/2020-03-30/doctors-raised-alarm-coronavirus-cruise-ship-bushfire-community/12097698


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