WANT TO HELP BUT FEELING HELPLESS?
Week two into isolation and you may be feeling a little flat, worn out, yet you’ve likely not done much today outside of sofa, Netflix, snacks, phone, laptop, Instagram, facebook… We are officially in the Digital Age or a Black Mirror episode - one of those.
We have a choice, to sit and let this new routine consume us, become fearful and self involved (hands up who’s exhausted all the instagram filters already this week?) or we can practise altruism and use this time to better ourselves by helping others… And therein lies the answer to that flat, restless yet worn-out feeling, yes we are talking about PURPOSE.
For those over 70 years of age, or people with health conditions, the government has advised to self-isolate for 4 months. There's no question that under these measures, many people will get lonely, and there are some more vulnerable than others, who at this time will need an extra hand getting through each day. So how can we support during this difficult time?
We’ve put together a few ways we can all come together and strive for purpose by doing our bit for the community, supporting vulnerable people.
JOIN A MUTUAL AID GROUP
Find out what mutual aid groups are operating in your neighbourhood. With extra time on our hands, there's scope to get stuck in and really make a difference.
Sign up to a mutual aid group and volunteer your services, this can include offering to pick up shopping for a neighbour on your street, providing a free service such as a digital music lesson, or art class, picking up medication or simply being at the other end of the phone for a chat.
You can register as a volunteer on facebook, find your local mutual aid group here
ENCOURAGE DIGITAL COMMUNICATION
Making the best use of the technology we have will likely save many lives while we tackle the issue of loneliness, and though we are practicing social distancing, it doesn't mean we need to socially disconnect.
Why not start an online book club with your local residents, or offer your services to teach a new skill? The possibilities are endless, from Joe Wicks taking the world by storm with his daily P.E lessons, to record labels hosting mix parties, and pub quizzes uniting friends and family the world over. There is a great online community out there, and it’s up to us to spread the good word and get everyone involved!
BECOME AN NHS RESPONDER VOLUNTEER
Our NHS Heroes on the frontline are calling out for extra help, and while many of us are not qualified to treat patients, we can support our key workers by offering our skills for practical use. Here’s what they are looking for:
- Community response volunteer - Helping with collecting shopping, medication or other essential supplies for someone who is self-isolating, and delivering these supplies to their home.
- Patient Transport Volunteer - Support the NHS by providing transport to patients who are medically fit for discharge, and ensuring that they are settled safely back into their home.
- NHS Transport Volunteer - Help by transporting equipment, supplies and/or medication between NHS services and sites, it may also involve assisting pharmacies with medication delivery.
- Check in and chat volunteer - You can provide short-term telephone support to individuals who are at risk of loneliness as a consequence of self-isolation.
You can sign up to volunteer here
These are only a few small ways we can make a difference, and we will continue to look for other ways to help as we battle through this. As a business we are working to support the NHS front line by directly donating over 3,000 drinks to hospitals so far, helping to keep staff on the frontline as healthy as possible. We have also donated over 5,000 drinks to our partners at FareShare to support the most vulnerable in society during this time, who are often the hardest hit. If you have a nomination for front line services or vulnerable groups and individuals that need our support, please get in touch through our website.