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  • Mishti Ali

Community Initiatives in Scotland

Lockdown can make it easy to feel isolated. However, social distancing does not mean that communities have to become distant. Community action in a crisis is pivotal, which is why we have rounded up the following stories from Scotland.

Community Hopscotch

A community in Edinburgh has come together to create a giant hopscotch game with over 880 squares. It was originally started by a landscape architect and urban designer, Jenny Elliott, whose work focuses on public spaces and community. Jenny said: ‘During lockdown, in a personal capacity and my spare time, I’ve been thinking how I can help connect people and community in a positive way (whilst ensuring physical distancing). The hopscotch was one way to do this, as it allows people to add squares whilst out on their daily exercise or hop up the hill. It’s been amazing to see so many people adding to it and writing really lovely messages of thanks to the NHS and drawings too.’ Find out more.

Online Magic Classes

The artistic director of the Edinburgh Magic Festival, Kevin Quantum, has been holding free daily Youtube magic classes to keep spirits high and little ones occupied whilst in lockdown. His tricks include mind-reading and making making spots appear on dominos. On the inspiration for his classes, Kevin said: ‘After the first few sleepless nights as my diary of live shows completely emptied, my next thoughts were, ‘How can I help here? What’s my role in all this?’…I was thinking that I wanted to be the ‘Joe Wicks of magic’’. Find out more.

Farmer Paints Sheep with Messages of Support

Farmer Andrew Jones, from the Hebrides, painted his sheep in support for the NHS. His flock of 11 have been decorated with bright love hearts, rainbows, messages, and ‘NHS’ in blue. On his work, Andrew said: ‘We were just wanting to show appreciation for the NHS frontline staff and a bit of a cheerier note for people to see on social media, rather than the doom and gloom.’ Find out more.

Tunnock’s Supports the NHS

Tunnock’s, the well-known Scottish brand, sent 2500 teacakes and caramel wafers to the Louisa Jordan hospital in Glasgow to keep NHS workers’ morale high. A company spokesman said: ‘All these men and women working so hard to create a new hospital in record time deserve a huge pat on the back and free Tunnock’s chocolate biscuits for their efforts. It’s just our way of applauding them.’ Find out more.

Airlines Set Up Lounges in Glasgow Hospitals

These airline workers are planning to set up first class lounges in Glasgow hospitals for NHS workers, allowing them to decompress after working on the frontlines. Operating under Project Wingman, the scheme seeks to keep workers’ mental health well whilst they work under such high-pressure circumstances. As well as giving staff a chance to sit down and enjoy a cup of tea, flight attendants will be on hand to listen and have a chat. Bob Doris, the local MSP, said: ‘I know from my constituents who are working tirelessly in the NHS in Glasgow to protect us all from the threat posed by Covid-19 that the decompression, headspace and opportunity to talk things over that Project Wingman offers would make a real difference to their physical and mental wellbeing.’ Find out more.


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