A group of volunteers from Sewing4Kingston has formed RBKares, to show our appreciation for the Care Homes in Kingston upon Thames.
We are working with the local community to reach out to residents and staff at local care homes. This is a community project to bring light to the vulnerable who are alone, say thanks to the people who care for them so well and let them know that their community has not forgotten them. We are looking forward to saying an extremely well-deserved ‘thank you’ to over 2000 care home staff as well as buying something for the more isolated residents. Our target may seem high but we need to show the care homes we are here for them.
It has been an extremely hard year for them and we are aware that Christmas 2020 will be very difficult. There will be far fewer visitors, fewer residents going out to visit their families and more pressure on staff to provide the extra care and entertainment that is normally taken up by local schools, community groups and family.
Schools and other groups will not be able to visit their local care homes this festive season. There won’t be carol concerts or parties. There won’t be the usual invitations to schools for a Christmas lunch, gifts and entertainment.We have phoned and written to all the care homes in the borough to get the names of any residents who don’t have family or friends to send them a card and gift, and the names of all their staff. The care home staff have worked so hard to keep their residents safe and happy during the pandemic. When no-one could visit or take their relatives out, they really had to step up. Some staff even moved out of their homes to ensure everyone was protected.We have asked the homes to suggest what gifts the residents and staff would like from the community, and we are looking to find a way of fulfilling that request. We have 44 care homes in the borough so we need to get the ball rolling on this as quickly possible to raise a significant amount.
We are also writing to all the schools as we would like the children to make and decorate personalised cards for the residents and carers.
We are already getting requests through from the care homes – items such as Christmas sweaters, CDs, perfume, wine, chocolates etc. We have lists of names of residents and staff that we are passing to schools so that they can make cards for them.
Using the money raised we will purchase the requested gifts and other general ones. Our volunteers will then wrap them, link them with the correct person’s card, quarantine them and then deliver to the homes. Having delivered well over 40,000 scrubs, bags, headbands and face coverings during the first lockdown we are very aware of quarantine requirements to keep everyone involved safe.
This is a huge shout out on behalf of care home staff who have borne such a large emotional burden through COVID, and to those residents who are alone. I am sure the community will want to support such a worthy project. Let’s share the love and kindness