Many of us are starting to feel the strain of the COVID-19 restrictions. I know I sometimes feel as if there is nothing I can do but to stay at home and count down the days until Ireland starts to ease more restrictions. This year has definitely been different than others and it’s completely normal to feel powerless right now. I think it’s always good to remember that by practising social distancing we are protecting ourselves and others from COVID-19. We have already done a great job at flattening the curve as there are now fewer infections, and if you want to continue to help, I have some ways you can help others overcome these difficult times.
1. Reach out to a friend
Being in quarantine can be very daunting, especially if you have no one to talk to. If you are feeling lonely or bored, reaching out to a friend may help both of you feel better. It may sound simple, but when you’re stuck at home it can be very easy to forget that we are all going through the same thing. By sending a message to a friend, having a video chat or playing something online together, you are helping each other get through all of the lockdown ups and downs. You don’t need to know everything about each other to enjoy each other’s company. I think you will be surprised by how a message from a friend can make such a huge difference to someone’s day. After all, I think the key to any friendship is keeping in contact with each other.
2. Support local business
Being able to shop at a variety of stores is amazing, but don’t be afraid to consider small local businesses. A lot of business restrictions have impacted local shops and they are trying their best to survive this lockdown, even with some of their doors closed. So if you think you can’t make a difference, think again. Every time you buy something local you will be helping someone for whom the business will make a huge difference. I am sure the quality will be just as good and your purchase could make a positive change in some workers and business owner’s lives. They are working hard, taking risks and deserve just as much support and respect as the big companies.
3. Shop for others
The COVID-19 pandemic has had a massive impact on our daily lives. Many of us are urged to stay at home whenever possible. However, some people who are more vulnerable to the virus, such as elderly people and individuals with health issues, do not have the privilege to shop for essential food and household items in the same way as others. In light of this, you can make a difference by volunteering to do the shopping for them. By purchasing items for them, you are making sure they don’t need to leave home and be exposed to the virus. This can make a big difference in their lives and it will definitely be rewarding once you have left the bags by their door.
4. Donate to a charity of your choice
Many of our charities have been lacking much-needed funds which they can use to support their users. You can make a difference by donating to Irish charities that are in need of your generosity. Giving is more impactful than ever and by donating, not only are you making positive changes to these charitable causes, but you may also inspire others to do the same. It is clear to see that many of us have already dug deep as viewers of The Late Late Show on RTÉ One have donated over €6 million to Irish charities since the COVID-19 outbreak. So why not join them and put a smile on someone else’s face by giving a gift that makes a change today.
The COVID-19 pandemic has created some very stressful times for people across Ireland. Right now, it is very important that we help each other through this with some small acts of kindness. From shopping local to donating loose change, we all have the power to help people affected by the virus. For more information on helping your community during COVID-19, please visit www.gov.ie for more details.