Coronavirus: helping people in isolation

We've teamed up with other organisations supporting the Covid-19 pandemic, to ask children and young people to make pictures, poems and stories that we can send to the thousands of vulnerable people, many of them older people, who are isolated due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

 

Why get involved?

 

You could get stuck into some fun creative activities and you could make a real difference the lives of isolated people.

Understand the change you want to make

What is it like to be isolated?

What is it like to be isolated?

There are thousands of isolated older people with very little contact with other people. Many cannot leave their homes and would really appreciate the colour and kindness that your creative ideas could bring.

Little or no contact with other people

Little or no contact with other people

Many of the older people that AgeUK are supporting do not have internet connections on phones or computers. Some do not have close family members or friends to talk to. AgeUK staff and volunteers are delivering essential food and medicine to their homes and would love to be able to include your creative ideas as well.

Find out more about the challenge

Find out more about the challenge

You can find out about some of the issues that charities are helping out with on www.ageuk.org.uk, or www.mentalhealth.org.uk.

What creative impact could you make with the arts?

Lighting up life with colour and kindness

For people who are lonely and isolated, receiving a person picture, poem or story from someone, particularly a young person, can have a really positive impact. It can help feel that you’re in contact with other people and that you’re sharing a human connection – through creativity and the arts.

…by writing a story

…by writing a story

Use your imagination to tell a story, made-up or real-life. It could be about your experiences of Lockdown, or it could be about your friends, or community – or something completely different!

…or making a picture, drawing or painting

…or making a picture, drawing or painting

You could draw or paint a picture… 

… or writing a poem

… or writing a poem

You could write a poem or song, about friendship, or the seasons, or anything else!

… or recording a song on a CD

… or recording a song on a CD

If you have access to some basic recording equipment and can make a CD, you could record yourself singing a song or playing an instrument. Many of the older people AgeUK are supporting do not have smartphones or computers but some will have CD players.

Can the arts really make a difference?

Absolutely! There have been plenty of research projects that have shown that taking part in arts activities, and receiving arts-based ‘gifts’ from others can have a positive impact on isolated people. We’ll be collecting some of your stories of impact on this page.

Making change happen

How will you actually use creative arts to make changes happen and how will you know that you’ve made a difference?

Getting feedback

Getting feedback

We’re hoping thousands of children and young people will get involved. Unfortunately, we can’t connect you with individual older people but if you’d like to find out what happens to your artwork, your school can register to get a feedback number. AgeUK will distribute your artworks to people across the country and we’re setting up a system that will enable recipients of your artworks to send a message back.

Evaluating your impact

Evaluating your impact

If your school receives feedback messages from older people, you could listen through to them to try to work out some of the impacts that your artworks have had on the people who receive them.

Evaluating impact across the country

Evaluating impact across the country

We'll be sharing stories and research about the impact nationally on this page.

Reflecting on what works

Reflecting on what works

Depending on the feedback you receive, you could work out what was really successful about using artworks to help with isolation, and what could work better, and then create more artworks. 

Share your ideas!

Please send us photos of your artworks (pictures, poems, stories etc.) and we’ll put some of them up on this website.

Running the project

Produce your artworks

If you’re at home, you’ll need to use the resources and materials you have at home – a paper and pencil is enough!

If you’re at school, your teachers will help with resources and materials.

If you're a teacher in a school, please get in touch with us to get started.

 

What can I send?

We’re looking for things that can be distributed along with food and medicine deliveries. So please don’t send anything too big, or heavy, or wet! We expect that most things will be on paper. If there are more than one piece of paper (e.g. in a written story), make sure they’re attached together (e.g. with a stapler) so they don’t get separated.
 

Positive messages

Positive messages

Keep your artworks positive. Perhaps you could say the kinds of things you’re up to in lockdown, or tell some stories from your local community. Think about what the situation might be like for some of the isolated older people across the country, then consider what kinds of artworks might help.

How good does it have to be?

How good does it have to be?

As good as you can make it! No one is going to be judging you – they’ll just be pleased about the effort you have put in. Make it as good as you can!

Who will receive my picture, poem, story etc.?

Who will receive my picture, poem, story etc.?

AgeUK will include your artworks when they send food and essential medicine out to isolated older people. This could be anywhere in the country! So they might be in a completely different place from you.

Can I send more than one?

Can I send more than one?

Yes, you can send as many as you like. Even if schools are open again quite soon for some students, it’s likely that many older people will need to be isolated for a much longer period. 

What do I do when I’ve finished?

Artworks need to be given to your school or you can post them to the address below and we will send them to charities working across England.

Creative Impact – Covid-19
PO Box 5432
BATH
BA1 0YP