From banging our saucepans on a Thursday night showing appreciation & support for the wonderful NHS, many of us joined local community groups to ensure everyone was doing ok; some became ‘Road Reps’ taking on the role of looking out for neighbours ensuring they weren’t lonely, had all the necessities they needed doing the shopping for them where required, cooking meals, collecting prescriptions & walking dogs; others co-ordinated the creation & distribution of information leaflets ensuring everyone was aware of up-to-date government guidelines as well as helpline numbers/websites with all enquires/cries for help being managed. Some of us got cutting & sewing making scrubs & masks for not only our local Hampshire community doctors, dentists, hospitals, police, fire service to name but a few, but also for the larger hospitals in London & even as far as Scotland! Some of us kept in touch via letter with elderly folk further afield from loved ones, with many of us supporting our local hospitality establishments where we could!
For those of us who knit, twiddle muffs (https://bit.ly/2HtC4Fd) and Angels were in high demand for Dementia patients to give them something to hold on to as well as talk to. Each time nursing & care staff enter a patient’s room they need to put on new PPE, this can take several minutes whilst at the same time needing to calm an often distressed patient who is unaware of why their carer is covering up & simply wants physical contact with someone. The twiddle muffs & Angels give the nurse/carer extra time as they act as a welcome distraction. Both these knitted soothers, as well as wooden peg dolls, have instigated a trial alongside the dementia team at Frimley Hospital to identify comforters for dementia patients who have really struggled during COVID-19. If it goes well it could go nationwide!
We even roped in our children to make small Thank You notes to go in the pockets of scrubs, along with a few small chocolates, as an added extra for our frontline workers.
Recognition has been received from the Mayor of Basingstoke and Hampshire Constabulary.
Not only have all acts of kindness helped numerous people within our local communities, they also make us feel good about ourselves and when we come through this, we will all benefit from becoming more neighbourly & friendly. As we return to work many of us continue to assist our local communities where we can.