Covid-19: Practical Ways to Help From Home
Although it may not be possible for you to take on a formal volunteer role, your time and willingness to help are still highly valuable to the Gosport community. Here are some suggestions of ways you can put this into practice:
- Actively offer encouragement and kindness every day. Try to think if there’s anybody you know of (perhaps a relative, neighbour or casual acquaintance) who might be lonely or struggling, and whose contact details you already have or could obtain easily. An occasional friendly phone call or message could make a real difference, or you could propose regular contact so they have something planned to look forward to. If you feel awkward or concerned about patronising or offending the individual, you could use an approach along the lines of: “I wanted to check in with you and make sure you’re ok. I’ve decided to use this time to make more of an effort to keep in contact with people, so if you’d be happy to message or chat on the phone, please let me know.”
- If you’re based safely at home, an uplifting sign or message on a window or door could make someone feel less alienated. If you have a teddy bear about the house, be sure to pop it in the window to participate in the mass (cruelty-free) bear hunt! https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-52108765 Those who are still out and about doing essential work cannot be praised and thanked enough, so if you’re receiving deliveries at home, a note of gratitude or even a silly joke could give someone a much needed boost.
- If your financial situation hasn’t been impacted by the present circumstances, consider making a donation to relief efforts. It goes without saying that delivering an emergency response on this scale is a major strain on our resources as a charity. Although fundraising activities may seem secondary in the circumstances, this is one of the most helpful, practical ways you can help the community. We would be hugely appreciative of any support you can offer, from actively spreading the word about our fundraisers on the Good Exchange and Facebook, to taking on an imaginative sponsored challenge of your choice! Please put on your thinking cap, and keep us posted with any progress. Do keep in mind that many people aren’t in a position to donate at this time, and we must be sensitive to this.
- Acts of Kindness Solent is also accepting donations of money and food, having taken on the local foodbank’s duties while they are unable to operate. Have a look at their Facebook page for more information: https://en-gb.facebook.com/groups/779417532110427/ and please also consider joining the online group as a means of offering virtual support.
- When using social media, take the time to add kind comments and replies to the activity of friends and strangers alike, and take a personal oath not to participate in any squabbling or unfriendly activity, however stressful things are!
- Basic sewing skills are all you need to help Gosport Crafters Without Borders make protective masks for local organisations, such as schools and care homes.
- Many parents are struggling to keep younger children constructively occupied while busily working from home. Your free time could be put to good use organising activity packs or challenges that you can send to contacts with children. The more engaging and time-consuming the activities, the better, and ideally they shouldn’t require printing, specific materials or any supervision. You could even offer to check the work/answers when it’s completed.
Thank you very much for your generosity and compassion at this exceptional time. By all means keep us posted of what you’re doing and submit your ideas by emailing email@example.com.