OUR COVID -19 RESPONSE
Supporting you with loss
We are busy getting ready with our covid-19 response. We have developed a three-phased plan with a variety of things to support you and your communities with loss.
We are currently seeking additional funding to help us to do this, as a small social enterprise we have been hit by work that has been stopped and accessing funds to support our work. If you can help in any way, big or small, please click on the donate button below; as a social enterprise all of our money goes towards supporting communities across the UK. There's no pressure on this though, we know that things are tough for everyone right now.
All donations will go directly to our programmes which will support individuals and communities who are struggling with loss during the pandemic.
If you'd like more information, or are interested in collaborating with us, please do get in touch.
NEW WAYS TO GET INVOLVED
Supporting you with grief and loss
We have a whole load of ways for you to get involved with The Loss Project, from loss themed spoon rooms, to creative writing workshops, tackling job losses and so much more, we're really excited to share our new virtual programme with you. All of our events will be published on our Upcoming Events page; click through to sign up and please do share with your networks.
SHARE YOUR THOUGHTS
A social media campaign encouraging people to open up about how they feel in the Covid-19 pandemic. Although we will be doing this through the lens of loss, the main aim is allowing people to share exactly how they feel; good, bad, ugly and everything in between.
Inspiration for the # came from pop artist Lizzo: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZfpnBrnqOfs - Lizzo’s song ‘Exactly How I Feel’ - it’s about letting your emotions out (plus some profanities- not for kids!).
You can submit your thoughts to firstname.lastname@example.org and we are happy to post anonymously.
Giving you the language and tools to talk about loss
This is hard. We hear you- but we know from experience that opening up the conversation about this stuff and connecting with others, really helps. Some of you might be working in organisations that need help with this, or with volunteers, mutual aid groups or your family and friends. We can help. We will soon be releasing some free downloadable content about job losses [watch this space] and can offer virtual workshops. There are many ways you can find out about our programmes, sign up to our email updates, or click on the buttons below.
STITCH IN TIME
Not just another number
Responding to the challenge of memorialising people who have died during the Covid-19 pandemic - from a Covid-19 death or not - The Loss Project is inviting people to commemorate the lives of their loved ones through creativity/ craft/ art and storytelling.
At present, there is little being written about the lives of the people who have died during this pandemic. By focussing on the numbers, and emphasising this disease rather than any others, we keep the focus on the story on these people’s deaths, rather than their lives.
We also know that due to restrictions, many funerals are taking place digitally, with a handful of family members or not at all. This means that many of us are not able to have the space for ritual during our bereavement.
We think that there must be other ways of celebrating these individuals and their stories.
How can we change the headline from the story of their death, to the story of their lives?
We are encouraging people to remember a person they know who has died during this pandemic period (regardless of if the death was Covid-19 related or not), by stitching, sewing, drawing or painting their full name onto a square of fabric. We will also be inviting people to write an accompanying page about that person, including text and images.
We suggest that the fabric squares are roughly the same size as an A5 piece of paper.
We aim (lockdown permitting) to hold a public event later this year, which would allow all contributors to come together and display this collective piece of work, as well as share the stories of these people’s lives with others. We want this to be exhibited to the public too; a space where we can all find solace in stories of lives when coming to terms with the scale of the grief we’re all experiencing.
We’re interested in planning the event together with participants and, in the interim, will also be sharing images of the artwork created, and the accompanying biographies, on our website and social media channels.
We hope that this helps to provide a quiet, personal as well as public way to remember people and their stories so that they don’t end up as just a number.
You can send us your stories and fabric squares by post to:
The Loss Project
PO Box 76563
NB: If you or anyone in your household have had covid-19 and are still self-isolating please wait until your self isolation period ends to create and send us your fabric squares.
LET'S GET STARTED: WITH MUTUAL AID
A simple guide to understanding and setting up mutual aid.
So much of what is happening right now is scary
People are dying from a virus that demands physical closeness to spread
And so, to keep ourselves and others safe, we must stay physically apart. But right at the same time, there has been an amazing burst of energy calling for ways to stay socially connected across this new, physical divide #TogetherApart
We have seen people standing up, and reaching out, in all kinds of ways
Doing everything they can to connect, to help each other and to stay “close” .
Mutual Aid Groups (MAGs) have been a major part of this, whether you realised this was their name, or not.
Neighbours, friends, families and colleagues have been reaching out and coming together to help and support each other in all kinds of ways, from the more obvious food and medicine, to the funny and silly. These groups have worked to weave our communities together and create hyper local, or in some cases global, networks of practical kindness.
In recognition of this emergence (not that these things are new (this is the way humans have been co-operating for hundreds if not thousands of years) we wanted to help encourage and nurture them, in whatever ways we can. And so, this is our effort.
“Let’s Get Started with Mutual Aid….”
It is a practical guide and planning tool for individuals and workers to support the creation of as many MAGs as are necessary, building real and practical capacity, on the ground, to deal with the tough times now, and to be sure we don’t forget what is important, as and when we get this virus under control.
We believe that mutual aid is for life, not just for corona (see what we did there!) we really want to support you to start MAGS that create long lasting connections, for however long they are needed in your communities. We're thinking of these really tough times as a kick start to embrace existing connections and to perhaps create new ones to support ourselves and each other with what's needed.
Need a bit more help? Ruth and Carly can provide workshops for organisations to support you in getting MAGS started in your sector - get in touch for more information.
We made this resource with our friends in our very own “MAG,” and we would all love you to use and share it in whatever ways you want, but please do reference us and our crew - we'd really appreciate it. Please also let us know how it goes - we will be updating and improving as your feedback comes in, and would really love to know and share all of the wonderful things you've been up to.
Carly & Ruth
Ruth Jackson is an Independent Worker involved in a range of social justice issues, including mental health, community building, housing, education and work. I am currently operating from my small and cosy home office in the North-East of England! You can contact me on email@example.com or follow me on Twitter @JacksonRuth_
Carly Attridge has many hats as a freelancer working across a range of areas including community action/building, end of life care/hospice sector, bereavement, loss and volunteering. She is also the Founder & Director of The Loss Project. She resides in North East London from her new office from home.
Contact Carly at firstname.lastname@example.org.