Tag Archives: #featured

How Coronavirus is affecting the homeless

With COVID-19 worsening, this puts in question how homeless people are meant to cope with the situation, as homeless charities face cuts and churches and drop-ins are forced to close their doors.


The Coronavirus pandemic has and continues to spread severely, as according to The Guardian, there are currently over 250,000 cases worldwide and 3,983 confirmed cases in the UK, with people being advised to self-isolate at home and avoid staying out on the streets.

But what happens to those who don’t have a home to self-isolate in?

The pandemic puts forward a new threat to those who don’t have direct access to food, homing and basic sanitation, and therefore places them at a greater risk of potentially contracting the virus.

“The Coronavirus has hit many homeless hard as obviously, they struggle to self-isolate, and even if the government give some homeless people office spaces or hotels to self-isolate, many will still be left on the streets” – Andrew Mcley, worker at Ealing Soup Kitchen

Those who live on the street don’t have the chance to wash their hands for 30 seconds several times throughout the day and they are unable to stockpile on food and hand sanitising gel, like the rest of us privileged ones are.

The Church of England made the decision of shutting down all churches as places of worship last Tuesday evening 17th of March, therefore also affecting the homeless as services are cancelled, and charities running soup kitchens within churches are denied access to the kitchens.

 

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Image from Ealing Soup Kitchen

 

Certain homeless charities including Ealing Soup Kitchen in West London are facing cuts and are currently only able to provide one service a week from four which they were able to provide before.

Andrew Mcleay, a current worker at Ealing Soup Kitchen comments: “the Coronavirus has hit many homeless hard as obviously, they struggle to self-isolate, and even if the government give some homeless people office spaces or hotels to self-isolate, many will still be left on the streets.”

“The devastation of this will lead to many more problems down the line, as many will feel even more isolated and alone as drop-ins and churches are closing around them and even night shelters are forced to close. So they really are on their own. It will mean that some who may not have otherwise may now turn to drugs and alcohol which will lead to an increase in services needing to cater for that.”

Ealing Soup Kitchen would serve around 400 homeless people weekly and with other services shutting down, they are looking into how they would be able to provide somehow else.

The charity’s workers are currently looking into how they will be able to serve the homeless in other ways by doing outreach on the days which they have lost, and find those on the streets to see how they can help them.

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Image from Ealing Soup Kitchen

Similarly, other charities including Brixton Soup Kitchen in South London are also adapting their services to still be able to help the homeless during the coronavirus crisis, making it able for people to pick up food and essentials whilst restricting physical contact.

In a video posted on March the 16th via Twitter, they report how they will be needing more essentials and encourage people to donate, as they are running out due stockpiling leaving supermarkets short of supply.

Coronavirus: Five tips if you’re working from home

For many it might be just like any other week, but for some, working from home may be a challenge and a lot of people are likely to be doing it for the first time this week due to the coronavirus outbreak.

About 1.5 million people work from home and its becoming more popular all the time.

So, if you’ve been told to work remotely and you’re not self-isolating, what’s the best way to keep your spirits up and stay motivated?

1. Get dressed

For some people, the idea of staying in their pyjamas all day may seem to be the most enticing aspect of working from home. But the routine of washing and getting dressed will not only improve your state of mind but will also psychologically prepare you to start work.

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Whether its business attire or anything else, some people find that dressing formally is helpful and also helps when you need to dial into those Skype video calls.

Wearing respectable clothes helps increase motivation to leave the house just like changing out of work clothes when you clock off for the day helps your brain to understand the working day is over.

2. Establish boundaries

If you work for a company then you’re likely to have set hours of work and it’s important to stick to those hours when you’re working from home. Be prepared to start your day the same time as you would normally arrive at your office or workplace and finish your day at the same time.

At the end of the working day, make sure you switch off your computer and tidy away papers and other things around your desk. Space allowing, set aside a separate area in your home where you can set up – preferably with a properly adjusted desk and chair, similar to your workplace. You should also ensure you find a space where you’re not likely to be disturbed, especially if there are other people in the house.

The NHS advice is that your chair should be adjusted so that you can use the keyboard with your wrists and forearms straight and level with the floor.

3. Get out and about (if you’re not self-isolating)

Whether it be for a morning jog or a quick cycle around the park, it’ll help with your physical wellbeing as well as getting some fresh air. A different perspective will also help clear your mind and help you a fresh pair of eyes  with any tasks you’re struggling with.

if you can’t go outside, there’s nothing stopping you from bringing the atmosphere into your home with you by using apps like Calm to play background noises such as rain, ocean sounds or even a busy environment like cafe chatter or a busy office for those times your missing the workplace.

4, Pick up the phone

When you’re at work, you’re more likely to engage with colleagues, but when you’re at home, you could spend the whole day without talking to anyone which can be confining.

So, it’s important to make some time to pick up the phone and have a real conversation rather than relying on texting or emailing.

5. Take regular breaks

You should avoid being cemented to your screen all day. It’s important to take regular screen breaks and get up from you desk and walk around or even stretch for a while.

Research has found that taking short breaks throughout the day are more beneficial than taking longer, less frequent breaks. Many home workers recommend the Pomodoro Technique, a time management method which which breaks your day into 25 minute chunks which is followed by a 5 minute break.