In this two-minute read, we look at the ingenious ways communities pulled together during the pandemic to spread joy and raise spirits.
In years to come, when we talk about living through the pandemic, we’ll no doubt mention face masks, home-schooling, and Zoom meetings.
But let’s not forget the countless examples of kindness and resourcefulness that we’ve witnessed in the community over the past 12 months.
Here are eight examples of can-do spirit in action.
Mutual aid groups
Since last March, 4,000 mutual aid groups have formed in the UK, providing an army of local volunteers who have delivered hundreds of thousands of food parcels, meals, and medicines to people in need.
Cleaning up the village
Last weekend residents of Tonna teamed up to clear the village of litter. Over 40 residents collected over 50 bags of litter making the village just that little bit nicer (and it's lovely already) Da Iawn!
A social club in Pontypool, Wales, transformed into a foodbank and supplied hundreds of families with food, baby clothes, and school uniforms. Allan Peploe, a driving force behind the Panteg House Foodbank, said he often went hungry as a child – and didn’t want anyone else to go without food.
Army major turned care home manager Jonathan Cunningham had an electric rickshaw fitted with a Perspex screen. He then took residents of Birkdale Park Care Home for spins around their hometown of Southport. The fresh air and a change of scene worked wonders.
When the going got tough in Milton Keynes, the tough got knitting. In December, the local hospital appealed for hats to help keep premature babies warm and local knitters responded by producing more than 3,000 dinky red beanies in a few weeks.
The power of song
In Warwickshire, an online choir helped people with long-term lung problems improve their breath management and ward off depression. Singer Keith, who took part in the My Voice Lifts My Soul project, said: “The choir gave me a reason to get out of bed in the morning.”
During lockdown, residents in over-70s independent living facility Williamson Court, Lancaster, started their own in-house delivery service. On Thursday mornings, volunteers delivered cakes to residents’ doors, and on Friday nights, a gin trolley rolled around.
When Rebecca Parker, 98, vowed to play the piano for 100 days in a row, the local community responded generously. Rebecca played Scottish tunes to her fellow residents of McClymont House, Lanark, for three months and raised £17,500 for Lanarkshire Health Board Endowment Funds.
From the team at Alison George, keep smiling and take care.