,  • March 20, 2020

A warm (but distanced) hello to you, our wonderful community and extended networks. I hope you’re all keeping healthy, motivated and calm in these unpredictable times. 

A wee update from us here at TMP on our response to the rapidly evolving COVID-19 situation. We are going to be doing our best to keep you informed as much as we can and as efficiently as possible. We will be continuing to provide the best possible support and resources we can to keep our social innovation community strong and connected. We’re here for you – and hope that you will be here for us, and our community, where you can too.

OPENING HOURS & COWORKING WITH US 

The Melting Pot will continue to keep the doors of our coworking space open until directed otherwise, to provide a place for those with an ongoing need for a space to work, meet or connect (from a distance of 6ft) with others. Whether existing Members, potential new Members or anyone wanting to drop in for a few hours to get some work done – we’re here, and we have space. However we have reduced our standard opening hours to 8.30am – 6pm, Monday – Friday (no longer open late evenings on Tue & Thu for the foreseeable future), effective immediately.

We are not taking the guidelines on social distancing lightly, and will be operating with the minimum number of staff in the space as possible. We have also seen a reduction in Member/coworking attendance in recent weeks, with an average of <10 people in to use the space across the day. Our Meeting Room, Workshop and Pod Spaces are all also largely available for individuals to work from, in isolation if they wish. 

Given the size of our space and these factors, we believe at this stage we can safely keep our doors open and enable people to work whilst at a distance from others. And we will continue providing a valuable resource for all those still needing use of our work space for as long as it is safe to do so.

VENUE HIRE

In that vein, we will also continue to have our Meeting Room, Workshop and Pod Spaces available for hire, for small groups or individuals. We ask that anyone coming to the space ensure to follow the following guidelines to help prevent the spread of germs:

  • Wash your hands regularly with warm, soapy water. There is hand wash placed at each of the fours sinks in TMP. There is also antibacterial hand sanitizer available at reception.
  • If you need to cough or sneeze, please do so into a tissue then throw the tissue in the bin. There are boxes of tissues at reception and at the tea prep.
  • Refrain from making physical contact with others – elbow bumps are the new handshake! – and try to keep a distance of 6ft. There’s plenty of space to spread out at TMP at the moment.
  • If you are feeling unwell, showing symptoms or are living with someone who has shown symptoms of the virus, it is very important that you stay at home. Please follow Government advice on self-isolation requirements.

In addition to the above, our landlords, Ethical Property Company, have also taken extra steps to help prevent the spread of germs in our building. This includes additional concentrated cleaning on hand surfaces such as lights and handles each day, additional cleaning materials provided, such as sanitizer surface spray,  and providing paper towels in place of hand towels for use in the bathrooms.  

TMPEVENTS PROGRAMME 

We have decided to postpone our Members’-only social events for the time being. Virtual group lunch and pub session it will be then!

We will however be continuing our Learning TMPEvents programme and are working on a solution to allow people to attend virtually. So please keep the dates of upcoming events in your diary, as well as checking our social media for additional events we hope to hold to help keep everyone engaged, informed and connected during this time. Just because we can’t be in the same room doesn’t mean the skills sharing and peer support has to stop!

CHALLENGES AHEAD 

This is unchartered territory for everyone, and many of our Members, clients and wider community – as freelancers, small business owners or charities – will be feeling vulnerable. 

The Melting Pot is a social enterprise with 3 business areas. However our charitable business is primarily resourced through our earned trading income – through our Coworking Hub services (workspace, venue hire and hospitality, virtual office). We are already feeling the impact of cancellations and lost income, and anticipate the worst is still to come…

Our management team and Board will be doing all we can to take care of our community and our staff, whilst also bootstrapping and working to ensure we can keep the lights on so there is still a TMP for us all to return to on the other side. But if you or your organisation have any means to continue to support us through this period to ensure we meet that goal too, it is greatly appreciated. Keep your membership with us, book rooms with us in the coming months, join our virtual membership network, attend our online events. And in doing so, you can keep your own people and organisation connected to the wider social innovation community through our virtual platforms – which we will have more details to share in the coming weeks. We’re harnessing community to keep us more connected than ever, but we’re going to need a little help from the community to survive this too.

If you have any questions or concerns about any of the above, feedback, advice or just some good news and cute cat memes, please send it all our way at [email protected] or chat to us on 0131 243 2626.

We wish you and your teams, clients, beneficiaries all the best in these strange and unfolding times. The only way we’re going to get through this is together (…but, at a distance).

From Sam, Head of Collaborate, and all the team here at TMP