PCC Willy Bach in August last year, supporting the Holiday Hunger Programme
“If you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say anything at all.” How often were we told that when we were children?
The theme for next week’s Mental Health Awareness Week is kindness. It got me thinking. Kindness costs nothing and yet means so much.
Throughout this terrible crisis I’ve heard countless tales of people going the extra mile simply to help others who are having a difficult time. Volunteers are delivering food, prescriptions, shopping for essentials, walking dogs for isolating households and sometimes just making a friendly phone call to a person living on their own. All this is often for people who are, or were, complete strangers.
Everyone is dealing with Covid-19 restrictions in their own way. Personally, I’m looking forward to getting back to the office. Others would much rather continue to work from home.
Feelings of isolation, and I don’t simply mean those who are self-isolating; fear of catching the virus; frustration at the restrictions; concerns about an uncertain financial future and many more issues are affecting people.
If you are struggling, if you think you need help, or know someone who does, then don’t be afraid to seek it. You can still access all the support services and now there is a Central Access Point as a local alternative to NHS 111 for urgent mental health help - just call 0116 295 3060.
The easing of restrictions this week has meant more change and more confusion – I have plenty to say on that, but I’ll save it for another day. But some will find it harder than others to adapt and accept to the new instructions.
If ever there was a time to look out for each other, this is it. We are literally in it together – albeit two metres apart!
Even when we get through this, and we will, it would be good to think that we might retain this togetherness, this community spirit and above all, the kindness. It would be something positive to come out of a dreadful period.
The great FDR once told the American people: “Human kindness has never weakened the stamina or softened the fibre of a free people. A nation does not have to be cruel to be tough.”
15 May 2020
Posted on Friday 15th May 2020