“It was nice to feel you have done something for someone who’s struggling at the moment and to make someone’s day.” It’s been inspiring to hear about what children and young people are doing to help others during COVID-19 – and none more so than William, Shannon and Alicia at the Good Shepherd Centre, who’ve blogged for the first time (and hopefully not the last!) about how they’ve been supporting local keyworkers during the COVID-19 crisis. Alison Gough, Director at GSC, tells us more…
We know from UK and Scottish surveying, including by Young Scot and Who Cares? Scotland, that COVID-19 has particularly impacted the day to day lives of young people with care experience and in group living situations.
At Good Shepherd Centre (GSC) young people have taken part in our own surveys about their experiences of COVID-19. They have spoken powerfully, particularly about missing family and loved ones. They’ve also shared their insight into other impacts of COVID-19, including physical distancing. Some ‘silver linings’ have shone through during the pandemic too. The sense of community between young people and adults has been inspiring at times and the staff team at GSC have been deeply impressed by young people’s understanding and empathy. The solidarity they’ve shown for others and in particular keyworkers in health and care has been humbling. Many of the staff team at GSC had partners or relatives working on the frontline, for example in nursing homes and hospital settings. So when one of our Chefs, Martin, came up with the concept of sending snack bags out to local keyworkers back in April, the young people made this very much their own project. We’re delighted that three of the young people have written blogs about their experiences and are becoming published bloggers for the first time, thanks to CYCJ.
I really enjoyed making the goodie bags for the NHS staff and we even got a picture back of the NHS staff holding the bags, I helped make the bags with Holly, Martin and Louise. We made 230 bags and all the NHS staff were very impressed with the GSC. They always have good things to say about GSC and were very happy with us and so were the staff within GSC. Holly, Martin, Louise and I have been doing this every couple of weeks. The NHS staff have been very busy, we will be working hard again next week to make these bags for them. Each bag has a packet of crisps, a bottle of water and a bar of chocolate, they really appreciate it.
A few weeks ago, I helped out making snack packs for the carers at the old people’s home in Erskine and other Key Workers around the area. We filled the bags with a packet of crisps, a mars bar and a bottle of water and a thank you note. Some of the notes I wrote said “you’re a hero”, “thank you so much”, “you’re doing an amazing job” and “stay safe, stay strong”. We got a letter back from Erskine saying a huge thank you and telling us about one of their residents, a Captain, who’s turning 105 this year, it was nice to hear. It was nice to feel you have done something for someone who’s struggling at the moment and to make someone’s day. It was nice to work with Martin and to do something different at school.
So, this is my first blog and will be my last! This blog is about how we did our bit to support frontline workers. We bought bags and filled them with bottles of water, mars bars and crisps. We did it with Martin from the kitchen, William and Jen. We also put little personal letters in with them. I really enjoyed it and it was really rewarding. Various people put their little messages on Twitter. Everyone is having such a hard time and frontline workers are doing long shifts with no breaks or no time for food so they deserve it. After doing it I was thinking about how tough NHS workers are working right now.