At some point, people will start to wonder or even see for themselves what good can come from Coronavirus. This does not diminish the utter devastation that many of us will experience through it, but it gives something of a silver lining when many of us will need to find one.
We are still in the panic stage, but gradually we will become more aware of the world around us. We will see how some people, offices, surgeries, schools and businesses in general are struggling more than others.
Through shortages of certain items often caused by panic buying, but also through reduced imported items and the overuse of other items, we will become aware of what we buy, what we actually need and what others need us to provide for them.
This seems like a perfect time to introduce some really positive community changes.
Whether you become more aware of your office/workplace colleagues, family members or your neighbours where you live, this can only be a good thing.
One thing is for certain
A large proportion of people in self isolation will have a whole new appreciation for what those who live like this for weeks, months or years on end go through. Maybe it will change the way they ‘gloss over’ their lack of contact with grandparents, avoidance of responsibility for local community and general ignorance of the loneliness and mental health effects of lack of community.
Reducing Waste & Sharing With Others
Luckily there are ways we can support others and find support during COVID-19 isolation and in the times ahead.
OLIO – a food sharing app (where food and other items can be donated locally from your home or workplace)
What is OLIO? We have copied and pasted from their about us page.
OLIO is super easy! To make an item available, simply open the app, add a photo, description, and when and where the item is available for pick-up.
To access items, simply browse the listings available near you, request whatever takes your fancy and arrange a pick-up via private messaging.
Here at OLIO we believe that small actions can lead to big change. Collectively – one rescued cupcake, carrot or bottle of lotion at a time – we can build a more sustainable future where our most precious resources are shared, not thrown away. Join today!”
Respect For And Appreciation Of Others
Highly relevant for aZtec Commercial Cleaning, but it takes times like this to really start to notice and appreciate people who work tirelessly to keep this country running, often completely under the radar and invisible to the majority of the population. This list includes but is not limited to office cleaners, school cleaners, hospital and surgery cleaners, refuse collectors, supermarket workers, NHS doctors and nurses and support staff, 111 call handlers, 999 call handlers, nursery workers, teachers, delivery drivers, postmen and postwomen, factory workers, road maintainers, food growers, pharmacists, chemists, office workers, taxi drivers, firemen, police, carers…the list goes on.
A brilliant advert which recently came out, thanks to Rory Hall (aZtec’s founder’s stepson) and his team shows this ‘invisibility’ beautifully. Watch the Night Workers | Overnight | McDonald’s UK advert.
Strengthened Community Spirit & Support Networks
I (Jane Tarrant) had intended to do something locally but the current situation has focused my mind on acting on it. Today, 17th March 2020, I set up a Facebook group and provided my email address to every home on my street. The response has been incredibly positive and multiple neighbours have already joined the group or emailed me.
This is what I wrote on the leaflet I dropped through each door:
“This group is for neighbours on (my) Road to support each other, make new friends, trade, network and generally be better neighbours. Some of us are at work for long hours, or are stuck at home with babies, are elderly or unwell or are just having a difficult time and could do with some support occasionally. Many of us know less than 5 other households on our road. I envisage this group to initially help with the following and maybe more: isolation shortages, protection of the elderly, depression, anxiety, friends/support structure, support of self employed, warning of house security issues, liftshare, emergencies, trading of favours (e.g. fix something for someone in return for home cooked meal), offering of non reciprocal favours, ability to ask for help without the entirety of Bicester seeing our post.”
This is a response I got back by email:
“I’ve just picked up your note through the door about your Facebook group. What an excellent idea. I don’t “do” social media and will try to resist it even now, but its nice to know that there are people who could help. My neighbour has already offered her services for shopping etc. I’m upset to be classed as vulnerable, as I am fit and healthy at 75 and am upset at having to cancel organising my Table tennis group and not going walking at the weekends and playing badminton. A friend has just written that if found out on the streets, she will be 69! I might try it in the dark! Anyway, thanks for the offer and I’ll be in touch if I need any help.”
Taking Time To Reflect
I hope that during this time of working from home and self isolation, the general public take their noses away from their screens for long enough to reflect on their own lives and the lives of those around them. Maybe being a little more kind, aware, respectful, grateful and proactive within their community wouldn’t go a miss. Doing all of the above would benefit yourself as much as others.
Written by Jane Tarrant (Linkedin Profile)
Feel free to contact me directly if you would like to.
You can also share the same article which is also published on LinkedIn.