And that’s it, lockdown take 2 is here. The first Coronavirus UK lockdown was a whirlwind of juggling work, home-schooling and zoom calls, and quite frankly just trying to work out what day of the week it was.
But this time, with the kids still at school, I’ve been reflecting on all the things we take for granted. All those things that make our lives easier and better. From schools teaching our kids, charities supporting our health workers, to the convenience of local small businesses. These people, charities and businesses are always there for us so I’ve been thinking of how to be there for them now, when they need us the most. And as a small business owner myself I know first hand how important that is.
Here are three ways you can help others during the coronavirus UK lockdown.
Support Small Businesses in Berkshire
According to Berkshire Business Growth Hub there are over 43 thousand small businesses registered in Berkshire, most of who are being heavily impacted by the UK coronavirus outbreak. These small businesses don’t just make our lives more convenient, they’re essential to our communities.
Below is 5 tips on how to support small businesses in Berkshire:
- Shop local when you shop online – many businesses have invested in shiny new online shops to make it even easier to buy.
- Order takeaway – Many restaurants and bars are offering delivery and takeout, you can find a few of my favourites listed here.
- Refer friends and neighbours – Small businesses rely on word of mouth referrals and are the best way to acquire new customers. Follow their social feeds, comment on their posts or even better take a photo of you with their product and post it to your social feed along with a shout out!
- Buy gift cards – Buying gift cards to the businesses you love is not only a lovely present for a friend or family member but it’s also a brilliant way of sending new customers to that small business. When you buy gift cards now with the intention of using them later it’s like giving that business a small personal loan to help them through the tough times.
- Write an online review – If a small business has given you an amazing service why not return the favour by giving them a review on Google (shameless plug – if you’ve had a photo shoot with me I’d love it if you could leave me a review).
Donate And Help Others Affected By Coronavirus
While you should feel free to donate to any organisation you choose, I’ve put together the below list of UK charities where your donations will help support some of the most vulnerable.
Donations to WellChild’s Resilience Fund will ensure their organisation’s ability to continue their essential work of looking after children who live with complex care needs.
Donations to Age UK will help to support older people in our communities when they need us the most.
Donations to the British Red Cross will help to provide medical equipment and supplies, and support those most impacted.
Volunteer during the coronavirus UK lockdown
One of the simplest things everyone can do is to look out for their neighbours and offer help with shopping and running errands. But for many of us that must stay at home there are opportunities to volunteer remotely. Many of the charities around Berkshire are also working with local authorities to create ways for people to get involved. Below is a mixture of both options.
Reading Voluntary Action
Reading Voluntary Action exists to promote and support the individuals and groups who make up our diverse voluntary and community sector.
Wokingham Volunteer Centre
Wokingham Volunteer Centre works with community, voluntary and charitable groups across the borough and helps promote the benefits and wellbeing that volunteering brings.
Find and join Mutual Aid groups near you! There are over 5000 Mutual Aid Groups from around the UK, getting into and supporting the most vulnerable in the community. A fantastic group operating in the Berkshire area is the Caversham Mutual Aid Covid Help Support group which you can join on Facebook.
Crisis Text Line
Crisis Text Line is a free, 24/7 support line for people in crisis. Crisis Counselors use active listening, problem solving, and safety planning to guide texters from a hot moment to a cool calm.
Pro tip: Texters are often in crisis at night, so their greatest need for Crisis Counselors is between 7pm and 3am. So if you’re a night owl, this is perfect for you!
One final way you can help during the UK coronavirus lockdown
Be Kind. A little kindness goes a long way. Be sure to thank your delivery drivers, supermarket workers, and NHS professionals.
If you’ve got any more idea’s or know of other local Berkshire charities let me know in the comments below, I’m sure I’ve only just scratched the surface!
P.S If you’re working from home and are wondering how to look good on webcam check out my latest post for my top 10 tips!