Dear parents, carers & friends,
Mental Health Awareness Week takes place from 18th-24th May 2020 on the topic of kindness. Aimed at supporting adults, the Mental Health Foundation has chosen kindness because of its singular ability to unlock our shared humanity. Kindness strengthens relationships, develops community and deepens solidarity. It is a cornerstone of our individual and collective mental health. Wisdom from every culture across history recognises that kindness is something that all human beings need to experience and practise to be fully alive.
The coronavirus outbreak (COVID-19) has taken a lot of us by surprise. Some people have described it as an episode of Black Mirror that they want to turn off, while others have said that they feel like the entire world is upside down. One thing that we have seen all over the world is that kindness is prevailing in uncertain times. People are coming together to sing on balconies in Italy, others are setting up groups to offer support to the elderly or vulnerable - like collecting groceries or calling them for a chat. Some people are having virtual movie nights and creating choreographed dances over video chat to share with the world.
We have learnt that amid the fear, there is also community, support and hope. The added benefit of helping others is that it is good for our own mental health and wellbeing. It can help reduce stress and improve your emotional wellbeing. In short, doing good does you good. Acts of kindness make the world a happier place.
I’m sure there are many random acts of kindness taking place in our community, I wonder if you would like to share your random acts of kindness during the coronavirus outbreak?
Before you start, please remember the following tips: Keep others in mind. Although carrying out good deeds for other people can make you feel good, don’t forget to keep in mind why you’re doing it – for their benefit not yours. Don’t overdo it. If you find that you are giving too much of yourself or have gone beyond your personal resources, think about taking a step back. We recommend starting small so that you don’t become overwhelmed or give more than you are emotionally or in other ways able to give.
Here are some random acts of kindness to inspire you:
- Call a friend that you haven’t spoken to for a while
- Tell a family member how much you love and appreciate them
- Arrange to watch a film at the same time as a friend and video call
- Tell someone you know why you are proud of them or thankful for them
- Send a motivational text to a friend who is struggling
- Send someone you know a joke to cheer them up
- Send someone you know a picture of a cute animal
- Send an inspirational quote or an interesting article to a friend
- Contact someone you haven’t seen in a while and arrange a phone catch up
- Spend time playing with your pet
- Reach out to call a friend, family member or neighbour who is experiencing loneliness or self-isolation
- Donate to a charity
- Lend your ear – call a colleague and ask how they’re finding the change in routine
- Give praise to your colleague for something they’ve done well
- Donate to foodbanks
- Offer to skill share with a friend via video call - you could teach guitar, dance etc.
- Offer support to vulnerable neighbours
- Offer to send someone a takeaway or a meal
Or you may want to reflect on kindness that has been shown to you during this time and share this with us.
If you would like to get involved, send a photograph (JPEG please) or video (no longer than 10 seconds) of your random act of kindness to firstname.lastname@example.org
I will then share it on our school website and we can all celebrate the wonderful, kind things we as adults (include your children if you feel it is appropriate) are doing to help support each other. I look forward to hearing back from you.
Stay safe and well.
For more information about Mental Health Awareness Week and the Mental Health Foundation Charity visit: https://www.mentalhealth.org.uk/