Helping people during the pandemic and beyond
Activity Bags Part II
We’re pleased to announce that we will be starting a new Activity Bag Project commencing July 2022. Find out more here
Activity Bag Project Part I Aug 2020-Feb 2022
Throughout the pandemic Pink House has been fortunate to secure funding from the following:
Central England Co-operative, The National Lottery Community Fund, and Northamptonshire Community Foundation (The Constance Travis Fund) and Persimmon Community Champions. This enabled us to supply free monthly activities to adults who are housebound or shielding during the pandemic.
Find out how we came up with the idea, finding the funds to get started and putting it all into practice. We are grateful to all our funders and our lovely volunteers who helped to make this project a reality and a success.
Activity Bags delivered since August 2020
Recipients Aug 2020 - Feb 2022
Organisations we worked with
About the project
Discover how we came up with an idea to ease the stress of lockdown.
Change of Direction
Like many businesses, in 2020 COVID-19 transformed the way we worked overnight. We had to put on hold plans for craft events and craft workshops and find a new way to continue to deliver our services. Although we are a small company it still took time to find the right solution that would help and benefit the people we work with.
We explored many ideas – Zoom craft tutorials, and weekly Craft Challenges. None were suitable for everyone’s needs. Finally, we came up with a credible idea. We discussed this with our Craft Club and residents living locally in social housing. We contacted local libaries and organisations to guage interest, everyone thought it was a brilliant idea. Finally we had a viable plan that hopefully would help ease the stress and anxiety of lock-down.
Our idea – Activity Bags – became a perfect fit for participants. Each month we created beautiful tailor-made bags of crafts and other activities, from a list of activites that people had chosen when completing their joining forms. The bags were delivered by our volunteer helpers direct to the recipient’s door and best of all the bags would be complete free of charge.
Finding the Funds
Pink House secured funding from Central Co-operative England. The Activity Bag Project became a reality and we were able to start helping people who were either housebound, or shielding. Since then we have gone from strength to strength; receiving a Lottery grant funding from Northamptonshire Community Foundation and Persimmon Homes -Community Champions.
The Importance of conversation
When we told people about the project they were very excited. We chatted with them about their hobbies and crafts that they did either at home or by attending a group. It was important to understand what people enjoyed doing and to find out what craft equipment (if any) they already had. We realised providing activities by distance would be challenging and these initital conversations helped enormously we when prepared the first Activity Bags.
Our First Delivery
We delivered our first Activity Bags in early August 2020. It took time to implement our ideas and various adjustments were made along the way. The project continued throughout 2021 when we delivered 70+ activity bags across North Northamptonshire with the help of volunteers.
We realised early on that we wanted to try and create a community/group spirit even though we couldn’t meet up and share ideas. We came up with the idea to write monthly Newsletters, this was a game changer as we were able to showcase photos of the things people had made using the contents of their bags. This inspired people to have a go at different crafts that ordinarily they wouldn’t have considered.
It’s good to chat
Throughout the pandemic, we kept in regular contact with people and our volunteer helpers to find out how people were coping with the various lockdowns. Many people were anxious, wondering what would happen. During these chats they told us how much the activity bags helped them each month and boosted their spirits. People loved the surprise of opening the bag and finding new activities to try.
We thought that winter 2021/22 might bring more restrictions and a resurrgence of the virus; at the time we had no idea that a new variant – Omicron would appear. We applied for funding to take us through the winter months and thanks to Northamptonshire Community Foundation – the Constance Travis Fund we were able todeliver Activity Bags from November 2021 until the end of February 2022.
If you are interested in finding out how we can help members of your community please get in touch.