Heartening stories from the pandemic – it brings out the best in people

Heartening good deeds during the pandemic

Yesterday we covered the NHS Volunteering Scheme, which has received a marvellous response.

We know there are individuals and groups up and down the country who are going out of their way to make life easier for vulnerable people. Small acts go a long way and even a phone call brings comfort to somebody who might feel forgotten and abandoned. We naturally get a little self-obsessed with our own safety and that of our families.

Here are some good news stories. We are only scratching the surface and we would love to hear about initiatives in your local area.

Unsung heroes in our everyday lives

The cleaning staff at our hospitals are hardly ever mentioned and they also deserve a tribute! Also those we hardly notice, such as our binmen, supermarket checkout operators, posties and even parcel delivery people. We’re sure there are many more too.

Greater Manchester is actively working to help the street homeless.

Andy Burnham, Mayor of Greater Manchester, has announced a £5m fund to house 1000 of the region’s most vulnerable people with immediate effect. Read more.

Then there is this excellent initiative to help London area NHS staff

“We are spearheading a campaign with LEON to get 6,000 meals a day into London hospitals for critical care staff and then hopefully across the nation to feed the NHS. The aim is that everyone will get one hot meal a day.” Read more.

Some companies are great to work for, while others . . well . .

DID YOU KNOW that Timpsons employs over 5,500 people in the UK and Ireland in 2,155 shops. All of its staff which Timpsons calls “its family” are on full pay until the current crisis is over. The company owns 10 holiday homes for the staff to use, it runs a £1000.00 weekly lottery for staff, gives staff an extra free 1 weeks paid holiday plus a £100 bonus if they get married. The company has Mental Health councillors, helps staff out financially with driving lessons and has a “Hardship Fund”. The company reserves 10% of its workforce for ex-offenders, in an attempt to rehabilitate people. The company ran a programme called “Dream Come True” for its staff, which did such things as reunite families, send people for private eye operations and flew people out to Australia.

We know there are many more good employers and we will cover some of them in future articles.

Individuals do some wonderful things too

Like a neighbour who created parking spot (pictured above) for an NHS nurse working in the front line in the battle against coronavirus. The space was marked out in white spray paint directly outside the health worker’s house so she does not have to search for a gap when returning from long shifts. Read more.

Small companies are playing their part

This motorcycle shop in North London – Motoden – said on Facebook: We’ve had quite a few ambulance and hospital staff on the phone today looking to get on scooters to get to work. It‘s tricky but we can make it happen. If you know any NHS workers who don’t want to be on public transport and their journey is too far for a bicycle we have the solution right here. We want to help if we can.

And a lovely true story to end with – we know the person:

“Heart-warming story from my daughter.

Supervising the line outside the Tesco’s where she works, a homeless man stood, as he has been for over a week now, hoping for donations of food.

Totally respectful of social distancing.

From the line one man asks the man if he is in a hostel or on the street living.

The homeless man tells this other guy he lives in the subway with about 10 others and he is collecting food for all of them.

The man in the line informs him that his brother’s flat is empty and that his brother has said he can give the keys to anyone who needs shelter.

My daughter was so so happy when this homeless man came back, not to ask for any food handouts, but to inform my daughter (they had a rapport) that he was now staying in this flat. For free.

She says he looked so fresh and healthy, obviously now able to wash and having had a comfortable few nights sleep.

What an amazing act of kindness towards a vulnerable person.

Things like this are happening across the UK.

We hear of selfish acts/blame each other/guilt tripping those not adhering to distancing.

Please share any acts of kindness you know of/have been involved in and fill the page with positivity.”

It’s good to look for heartening news amidst the doom and gloom stories

Actively searching for stories like these has a positive impact on our wellbeing. Try it yourself and let us know of any you find.