Volunteering While In Lockdown
A lot of us are feeling pretty helpless at the moment, confined to our homes while the country is in lockdown. While the most important thing we can do is to stay home and away from others, there are still ways we can help. Read on to find out some little things you can do to volunteer if you are in isolation, as well as volunteer opportunities for those not showing symptoms or needing to completely isolate.
Websites for good
Sites like freerice.com ask you to do simple little things like vocab quizzes and in exchange they donate to those in need. You could even set www.ecosia.org as your default browser and just by searching regular stuff like "Top tips for building blanket forts" you'll help plant trees!
Offering support during COVID 19
There are a lot of vulnerable people who are self-isolating at the moment. The NHS are now asking for volunteers for community response, transport assistance and to help combat lonliness. Those roles involve delivering essential supplies to those in need or simply chatting to someone who's feeling lonely on the phone. Coordinated by Good Sam, you can find out more here.
More locally, BCP Council have set up a helpline, run by volunteers, to help vulnerable residents with picking up food and household supplies, as well as provide a cheerful voice to break up those long days of self-isolation. You can find out more about volunteering for this helpline here.
You might not consider sharing a Facebook post or posting about a key issue on your Instagram volunteering but it can be! If you dedicate a post to raise awareness about a charity or initiative that you care about then you're helping out. We recommend finishing with an action that your friends can follow up with, be it reposting, donating or doing something for good. Posts about COVID 19 and encouraging people to stay at home or not to panic-buy are espeically important at the moment. Though we recommend phrasing these in a positive way so as to not trigger more anxiety and panic in others! Try reposting from accounts like @the_happy_broadcast!
Donating to food banks
Last December we did a food collection for Hope For Food and loads of you donated. Now food banks really need your support, as donations have decreased. For the price of your Costa coffee you can buy a few tins or some cereal for families in need. We like donating to Bournemouth's Hope for Food or Bournemouth Food Bank, who have loads of local collection points. So include some extra items in your shop or donate some money to banks so they can source items themselves. (Lists of required items are posted on their webpages and social media channels: @BournemouthFood Bank, @Hopeforfood)
Putting a smile on someone's face
Finally, not all volunteering has to be organised. Do a little something for someone else when you next have the chance. It's the small things that often make the difference to someone's day, espeically a time of high anxiety. Phone someone who lives alone, create e-cards or send someone artwork that you've created or include your housemate's washing up in your own.
"I want to do more for my community!"
Dorset Council have put together a helpful webpage on community groups through the outbreak of COVID 19. While we want you to volunteer if you're able, the most important thing is to do it safely and by following the correct procedures. Read more here.
Like our AUBSU Activities Hub Facebook Page & @aubsu Instagram account for more online resources and support.